Neymar Jr Raises $100K At Charity Poker EventJuly 29, 2015 1:03 pm
In May, PokerStars signed Brazilian soccer superstar Neymar Jr as a brand ambassador, and in his first official engagement representing the site the 23 year-old hosted a charity poker event on the sidelines of the Brazilian Series of Poker (BSOP) currently underway in Sao Paulo. Proceeds from the event go towards his charity, the Neymar Jr Institute, and as you would expect it was a well attended affair with more than 80 people entering the competition, and a further 40 rebuys before the event was completed.
Enjoying playing alongside such Brazilian poker pros as Andre Akkari and Felipe Ramos, Neymar Jr was eventually eliminated from the tournament but still walked away with a big smile having raised $100,000 to helps the poor in Sao Paulo. Having accomplished his goal, Neymar Jr then made a prompt exit as he headed across the Atlantic to Barcelona for some pre-season soccer training.
Needless to say, the Charity Home Game proved a hugely successful affair and demonstrates the important impact star power can have in raising money for charity, whilst also boosting the profile of poker. Over the years, poker’s biggest charity fund-raisers include another top sportsman in the guise of Tiger Woods, whose annual Tiger Jam is considered one of the “best parties in Las Vegas”. Attending the event this year was a slew of the rich and famous, including Mark Cuban and Ed Sheeran, with $1 million eventually raised for his Tiger Woods Foundation.
Another influential charity fund raiser in the poker stakes is French-Canadian billionaire Guy Laliberte, who created the WSOP One Drop events which have thus far raised over $2 million for his One Drop Foundation, which aims to provide access to safe water in poverty stricken countries worldwide.
Amongst the poker pros, 14-times WSOP bracelet winner Phil Hellmuth has perhaps worked more tirelessly than anyone to raise funds for a whole range of charitable good causes, including Doctors without Borders, Habitat for humanity, and “All in” for Kids charity. As he explains:
“Giving to charity makes me feel great about winning big and setting records. Giving to charity gives me clarity! Bottom line: giving to charity increases my own sense of entitlement.”