Once cricket legend Steve Waugh said, “If you don’t help people who are in need, it’s just not cricket.” There are notable cricketers who dedicated their life to charity following their retirement from cricket. Being a cricketer they used to roam around the world. They amused people with their art of playing. During the tour they did not seat back at hotel, instead they roam around the city and explore it. Their eyes did not miss the plights of poor people. They did whatever they could for people during their playing days, saving time from their busy schedule. But, post retirement they dedicated their life to the well being of people.
Cricket players make lots of money. So, it is a common question among the fans that what their heroes do for the common people besides playing for the country.
Kind hearted cricketers founded their own foundations to sponsor medical research. We have seen cricketer’s raising fund for building shelter for homeless people.
Only playing cricket can make a cricketer legend, but their unconditional supports to common people make them icons.
Because of the philanthropist work Steve Waugh was regarded as Australian of the Year in 2004 while Ian Botham was knighted by Queen Elizabeth in 2007 for his service to the country.
There are cricketers who do charity occasionally, but only a few cricketing greats dedicated their life to global cause.
Here at Sportzwiki we look on charity work of cricketing greats:
“YouWeCan” Yuvraj Singh Foundation
Yuvraj Raj Singh is the only cricketer who focused on charity in a big way. After winning the battle with cancer, Yuvraj Singh formed the “YouWeCan,” to tackle cancer at the premature stage. The aim of the initiative is twofold: To create awareness and eradicate the socio- psychological stigma attached with cancer and provide mobile cancer examination stations within the reach of masses with a view to make routine check- ups a habit.
Mewsic, a Brett Lee Foundation
Brett Lee’s foundation believes music is the powerful tool to unlock the potential in children.
We all know Brett’s love for music. He once said “if you took cricket out of my life, I’d be sad. But if you took music out of my life, I’d be devastated.”
But, what is lesser known about this handsome cricketer is his love for children. We know Brett Lee nickname is Binga that derived from an inspiring story of small, yellow, fuzzy cat. Brett Lee transformed his love for music into charity for stranded children.
“I am very passionate about India. I love its colour and characters. Having travelled here many times a year for over a decade now, I feel humbled by the country and its people, who have given me so much to be thankful for! With a young son of my own, I want to ensure that all children in India have the opportunity to experience the joy and power of music.”
To make Mewsic widely recognized and used as a powerful tool to HEAL, EDUCATE, EMPOWER and ADVOCATE for underprivileged children in India.
Following in the footsteps of Imran Khan, Shahid Afridi established a charitable trust with the objective to provide basic healthcare and education to the people of Pakistan. He decided to start from his own hometown, with his own money and his own family and village supporting his noble cause.The Shahid Afridi Foundation was established in March 2014 and the core concept behind it is: Charity laced with absolute philanthropy. The hospital caters to the underprivileged people of Kohat, with little or no means to basic medical healthcare.It’s a maternity hospital in Tangi Banda, Kohat, which provides free treatment, medicines and care for patients. It has just completed its first phase of development, houses around 16 beds at the moment, and has major expansion plans.
The Ponting Foundation
The Ponting Foundation is yet another effort by a cricketer to help families beat cancer. It was in 2002 a good friend of the Children’s Cancer Institute Australia (CCIA) invited the Pontings to visit the Sydney Children’s Hospital and meet the many children and their families in the oncology ward. The stories that they heard in the oncology ward rocked the Pontings who sat tearfully outside the hospital and made a commitment to improve the lives of young Australians with cancer and their families. The Ponting Foundation was a result of that commitment.
Says the foundation website, “Through alliances with some of Australia’s leading cancer charities and research groups, Ricky has used his profile to influence widespread community engagement to raise important incremental funds for specific charity programs, hospitals and ground-breaking research projects engaged in the fight against cancer in Australia’s children and youth.The Foundation also funds programs that assist in the care and well-being of the wider family unit as they support their child through their illness.“
Glenn McGrath lost his wife Jane as he took retirement from cricket. But, he lives in the memory of his wife Jane thereafter.
Glenn McGrath’s wife Jane McGrath was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2003. Jane passed away in June 2008, touching the heart of every Australian, but Jane’s memory lives on. She has undoubtedly left a lasting legacy through both her family and the onging work of the McGrath Foundation, providing thousands of Australian women and their families with hope and support during their experience with breast cancer.
Jane McGrath AM
Following a personal experience with breast cancer, Jane and Glenn McGrath decided to launch the McGrath Foundation in September 2005 to do what they could to help families going through a breast cancer experience. The motto of McGrath foundation is together “we can make a difference.”
Glenn McGrath is the co-founder and president of this foundation. McGrath foundation train nurses for cancer patient’s treatment. They raise money and make awareness campaign about breast cancer.
Muttiah Muralitharan, Foundation of Goodness
Seenigama is a village on the south coast of Sri Lanka, about 22 kilometres north-west of Galle. It is here that Muttiah Muralitharan established the Foundation of Goodness in the early 2000s. The foundation supports the needs of the locals, education, health care, housing, livelihood etc. Murali has been supported in his noble cause by several cricketers in Sri Lankan, Australia and England. Murali now has his eyes set on building a one million dollar sports complex for war-displaced civilians in Mankulam, a town located 300 kilometers from north of Colombo.
The project aims to build a sports center, a school, English and IT training centers and an elders’ home. Murali is also an ambassador for the United Nations’ World Food Programme. The programme is to fight hunger among school children.When the tsunami devastated Sri Lanka on December 26, 2004, Murali ensured that aid reached the people affected by the calamity by paying for three convoys of 10 trucks each get food for the tsunami-hit people. He also signed an agreement with cement giant Lafarge to supply cement to the Foundation for Goodness in exchange for work his endorsement did. His foundation raised $4 million in the first three years following the tsunami to help survivors.
The Steve Waugh foundation
After taking retirement form cricket Steve Waugh dedicated his life to charity work. He believes that cricket can make difference to those children who face different kind of challenges, and being a celebrity surely helps when working for a cause. He got his life changing moment when he met Mother Teresa in Kolkata.
“India gave me this life-changing moment when I met Mother Teresa in Kolkata,” Steve Waugh once said.
Caption: 9 Mar 2001: Justin Langer of Australia meets some of the residents of Udayan Resurection Home, Steve Waugh patroned the girls wing of the home
Waugh has strong bond with Kolkata. He raised funds for leper children in Kolkata. In 2013 He visits the visits the Steve Waugh Foundation’s Flagship project at Udayan to new extension to girls Building on August 6, 2013 in Kolkata, India. Udayan, is a rehabilitation home for children suffering from leprosy in colonies near Barrackpore.
Steve who was inquisitive by nature, always encourage his teammates to know countries they visited during his captaincy tenure. Waugh also wrote articles for newspapers on the state of cities which he visited.
Imran Khan Foundation (IKF)
Imran Khan is probably the greatest leader Pakistan have ever got. He won the World Cup for Pakistan with a broken team as he inspired his teammates by calling them “wounded tiger.”
Most notable among his humanitarian efforts has been the establishment of Shaukat Khanum Memorial Cancer Hospital and Research Centre, named after his late mother. It is Pakistan’s first and only cancer hospital that provides 75% free health care, and was built on public donations. Imran is now building a second hospital in Karachi, based on the successful Lahore model. In 1994, he inaugurated Namal College, a technical college which is now an associated college of University of Bradford.
IKF has intervened on behalf of 3772 people farmers in Chiniot, Punjab.
Imran Khan is a tireless fundraiser for social causes in education, health and basic social services who brings intelligence, energy and unwavering commitment to his public service work. In the wake of recent floods, he founded Imran Khan Foundation, and raised much needed funds from the Pakistanis community at home and abroad for relief, rehabilitation and reconstruction efforts, to ease the burden of poor communities in the aftermath of Pakistan’s most devastating floods ever.
Ian Botham – The Beefy’s Charity Foundation
Ian Botham one of the great allrounders cricket has ever seen. The flamboyant cricketer, whose nick name is Beefy, acquired a habit of helping people in 1985 when he trekked 900-mile from John o’ Groats to Land’s End.
His efforts were inspired after a visit to Taunton’s Musgrove Park Hospital whilst receiving treatment for a broken toe; when he took a wrong turn into a children’s ward, he was devastated to learn that some of the children had only weeks to live. Since then he raised 12 million euro for charity. Each year he makes a charity tour across cricket playing nations. This year he will pay a visit to South Africa.
The Beefy’s Foundation raise fund for Leukemia, Lymphoma research, Brain Tumor Research and Support , Cardiac risk in the Young and Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, Batten Diseases Family Association.