The holidays are around the corner therefore we’re bringing you a “Five Things to Know” that will warm your heart and make you smile. We’re aware that not one person can save the world but these athletes are trying. (For the record there are so many athletes doing great work that we’d have to write a novel to cover them all).
The Last Night’s Game Team
Five Ways Athletes Are Making A Difference
- New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning is a New Orleans native with a big heart. He is very involved in the community but one of his biggest projects was raising over $3 million to construct a children’s clinic in Jackson, MI, the only hospital in the state devoted to children. His clinic helps more than 75,000 children a year. Manning has been named one of the Top 20 Philanthropists Under 40.”
- Soccer’s Cristiano Ronaldo gives back in many ways. He's dedicated to fighting hunger and obesity through two separate international campaigns. There are stories of him paying out of his pocket for children’s surgeries that their parents couldn’t afford (think $83,000 each). He also donated his entire Champions League bonus to charity (€600,000).
- Serena Williams is a legend on the tennis court and that status extends to her charity work. She serves as a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador, a role through which she has helped improve education for over five million African students, she's fought against breast cancer and works to provide access to education in impoverished areas through "Schools for Asia."
- The Miami Dolphins Ndamukong Suh took a break from the field to “Pay Away the Layaway” for Miami area families who were paying off items on layaway at an area merchant. He also supports children with school supplies and makes significant donations to education. He recognizes how his family struggled and like so many athletes, acknowledges he is now in a place to help.
- Basketball's LeBron James is making a significant impact. His expansive community outreach touches many charities. Through his foundation he provides more than 1,100 full ride scholarships to University of Akron for students from Akron, OH. The program starts in third grade and the students are mentored through high school graduation and must have 3.0 GPA. This program is said to cost $41 million.
- Bowl games are another chance for a college player to impress NFL teams, but we are seeing a trend of players not playing in the games to avoid injury which could hurt their upcoming draft status. Tell us what you think – are they counting their chickens before they’re hatched?
- On Monday we reported on Dallas Cowboys’ Ezekiel Elliott’s leap into the oversized Salvation Army kettle. His post-touchdown antics increased the Salvation Army’s donations by 61%, including a significant donation from Elliott himself. The publicity alone was worth at least $4 million in equivalent advertising exposure. Way to use that celebrity status for good!
- The rosters for the NFL all-star game, The Pro Bowl, have been announced. The game takes place a week before the Super Bowl in Orlando. The players whose teams are in Super Bowl are ineligible to play in the Pro Bowl. Typically most starting players starters announced will not play in the game and risk injury.