Giving away money for free is something that many people avoid doing. Professional athletes, however, among other successful people, tend to give something back to the community. An athlete, before anyone else, should know that their own success comes from working out, but also from the help of many other people. The staff behind the athlete is very important, as well as the friends, family and fans who constantly help out by supporting them.

Some athletes love giving all of that back. Here are the world’s most charitable athletes.

Cristiano Ronaldo

Cristiano Ronaldo often makes headlines, if not for his plays and goals, then for his charity. Sure, he did make the headlines when he switched from Real Madrid to Juventus, but he also made a lot of headlines over the years, when he donated a lot of money to various organizations.

Tens of millions of dollars were donated to healthcare groups, local charities and environmental charities. Not only that, but following the devastating earthquake in Nepal, Ronaldo donated five million dollars. Around 1.7 million dollars were donated to various schools in Gaza. Ronaldo is quite the philanthropist.

John Cena

While he does seem like quite the tough guy, always calling out his opponents before smashing them into the ring, he also has a heart of gold. He often has campaigns against bullying and tries hard to raise awareness for cancer. His most notable activity is contributing to the Make-a-Wish Foundation, helping many children with life-threatening illnesses by making their wishes come true.

J.J. Watt

Moving over to the NFL, J.J. Watt is another name associated with greatness, yet he is also quite the philanthropist. He helped raise over thirty five million dollars to help victims of the Hurricane Harvey.

LeBron James

This man needs no introduction, at least in the world of professional basketball, specifically the NBA, yet as a philanthropist, you might not have heard of all of his ordeals. His LeBron James Family Foundation serves to help children, primarily. His contributions go beyond forty million dollars. Other than that, there have been many other contributions to society and charity like replacing roofs, furniture, paying for visits to amusement parks and sending children to college.

Ronda Rousey

Another, without a doubt, tough name, from the world of Ultimate Fighting. Ronda Rousey was a UFC champion and is an active philanthropist. She helped various causes, most notably the Didi Hirsch Foundation which is in charge of the Suicide Prevention Centre. She is also responsible for the Gompers program which cover the accommodation, food and airfares of young athletes. She also supports the World Food Programme by donating rice, lots and lots of it.

Serena Williams

Serena Williams is a multiple Grand Slam tennis champion, as well as quite the philanthropist. Her contributions are in no way small. She does everything big, so she helped construct two schools in Kenya, and helped vaccinate children in Ghana. Her Serena Williams Foundation helps the downtrodden, those who were unfairly treated by the legal system. The foundation also keeps the streets clean from drugs and weapons, while also providing college scholarships.

These are the world’s most charitable athletes. They showed us amazing athleticism on the fields and pitches and courts, and what it means to be a philanthropist, when not earning medals and trophies.

The World’s Most Charitable Athletes