Everyday Heroes

Sports Stars Rally To Help Their Communities During Coronavirus Crisis

Some are giving money to support workers; others are making sure those fighting the virus stay fed.

As businesses continue to shutter all over the country as a result of the coronavirus crisis, people are stepping up to help however they can. That includes sports stars, who are using their time off to do good things in their communities.

Ben Roethlisberger of the Pittsburgh Steelers, aka "Big Ben," recently pitched in to make sure one of his favorite hometown restaurants stays in business. The quarterback bought a "significant amount" of gift cards from Juliano's Italian Restaurant in Robinson, enough for the owner to keep his full staff available for carry-out and delivery orders during the crisis.

QB Ben Roethlisberger is doing his part to help a local business stay afloat. @SteelTownUsa

Nick Scalise, the owner of Juliano's, said that while Roethlisberger wasn't looking for any publicity for his good deed, he wanted to share the positive story to cheer people up during such dark times.

Roethlisberger says he'll pass out the gift cards to people in need.

Experts say buying gift cards gives a business some immediate cash to help until the crisis is over: How You Can Help Your Favorite Small Business Stay Afloat

Kevin Love of the Cleveland Cavaliers was the first major sports star to step up and donate $100,000 to cover the lost wages of arena staffers when the NBA suspended its season.

Since Love made his announcement, dozens of players and team owners have joined him and agreed to pay arena workers during the hiatus, including the Miami Heat, Los Angeles Lakers and Denver Nuggets.

Other teams are taking care of their communities by feeding the people who are on the front lines fighting the virus.

DeMarcus Lawrence of the Dallas Cowboys hired a taco truck to feed Dallas first responders, while the Pittsburgh Pirates baseball team delivered pizzas to hospital workers in Pittsburgh.

The Pittsburgh Pirates baseball team bought over 400 pizzas for local hospital workers. @Pirates

The generous acts of charity aren't limited to those who are helping organizations in the US. Former NBA player Jeremy Lin made a massive donation to help fight the virus in China. Lin, who now plays for the Beijing Ducks in the Chinese Basketball Association, gave $1 million yuan to his foundation in China to help send medical equipment to Wuhan.

Basketball player Jeremy Lin gave $1 million yuan to help fight the coronavirus in China. @BleacherReport

It's awesome to see so many famous faces stepping up to help during the crisis. We're sure their efforts have made a huge difference to people in their communities and beyond!

How can you start something good?

Inspired by what these players and teams are doing? You might not be able to donate millions of dollars, but you can be your own MVP by pitching in however you can.

Consider donating to your local food bank, or chip in to help fund your city's United Way Emergency Basic Needs Fund.

Even if you don't have any funds to give, you can do your part by showing kindness and compassion to others every day. Wave hello, share a smile, lend a hand if someone needs it.

We can all do our part to help each other get through this crisis.

Let's #StartSomethingGood together.

The Conversation
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