Cristiano Ronaldo is using his voice and platform as an international soccer superstar to help the children of war-ravaged Syria.
On Friday morning, the Real Madrid forward and Portugal national team captain released a video on his social-media accounts calling the children affected by the Syrian conflict “the true heroes” and telling them, “Don’t lose your hope.”
Ronaldo has also made a “generous donation” as an ambassador of the London-based Save the Children international organization to help provide food, clothing and medical care for families in Syria. The organization, which Ronaldo has supported since 2013, said in a statement to The Post that Ronaldo asked Save the Children not to discuss details of his donation but added that it “will help us provide much-needed relief to children from Aleppo and across Syria.”
Ronaldo wrote on social media that his video is meant to be a “message of hope.”
“This is for the children of Syria,” he said in the video. “We know you have been suffering a lot. I am a very famous player, but you are the true heroes. Don’t lose your hope. The world is with you. I am with you.”
After years of brutal fighting between government forces and rebels, the Syrian military declared Thursday that it had regained full control of Aleppo for the first time since 2012. The crisis has decimated buildings in the city, and years of airstrikes have killed civilians caught in the battle — including children.
“Cristiano Ronaldo’s generous donation will help us to support children from Aleppo and across Syria, who have suffered things children should never have to live through,” Save the Children’s Nick Finney said in a statement. “We are tremendously grateful for his life-changing support. Ronaldo is not only one of the world’s most iconic sports figures, but he also has become a beacon of hope for millions of boys and girls worldwide — and hope is something that Syria’s children need now more than ever.”
This is not the first time that Ronaldo has lent his support to Syrian children. In March, Ronaldo posted a photo of him and his son, Cristiano Jr., with a photo of Ayman, a five-year-old Syrian refugee and soccer fan. The tweet included a link to Save the Children’s Syrian children relief fund.
“With Ronaldo’s help, we can keep the focus on the children of the Syrian war, many of whom have known nothing but war their entire life,” said Carolyn Miles, president and CEO of Save the Children. “After five years of this conflict, we don’t want the world to forget the children — they shouldn’t have to pay the price for the world’s inaction.”