Sporting legends shine a light on Real Heroes at Heart of Laureus Sport For Good

March 21, 2016 
Today, we are proud to launch the Real Heroes campaign, an inspirational series of human interest stories which prove that sport has the power to change the world.
16 years after Laureus’ Founding Patron Nelson Mandela said “Sport has the power to change the worldat the first Laureus World Sports Awards, Mandela’s words continue to ring true in some of the poorest and most vulnerable communities around the world. This has become the philosophy of Laureus; the driving force behind its work.
Ahead of the Laureus World Sports Awards, which take place in Berlin on 18 April, the Real Heroes stories will showcase the incredible work of Laureus Sport for Good to transform the lives of individuals and promote the power of sport as a development tool to combat challenging social issues.
The new Real Heroes campaign uses a storytelling approach and focuses on all the inspiring stories of the projects supported by Laureus Sport for Good. We are focusing in this campaign on meaningful content that could inspire people and educate them on the work of Laureus Sport for Good, which uses sport as the means to promote social change.
The objective of the Real Heroes campaign is to tell stories which are genuinely surprising, with the endorsement of top athlete’s, creating truly engaging and emotional narratives. Ideally, they will engage our followers to think that thanks to sport the world is a better place.
Real Heroes launches with stories from three continents, all using different sports to support young people who need it most. From youngsters in a Cape Town township who are using skateboarding and surfing as a source of therapy and support, to an organisation highlighting the power cricket has to shift perceptions of young people with a disability.
We invite you to discover our brand new Real Heroes website with unique content presented through interactive long form feature articles with a fully responsive design including impactful photos and exclusive videos to bring our stories to life.
The work of project leaders and participants which is highlighted in Real Heroes, has impressed Laureus Ambassadors and Academy Members from skateboarding icon Tony Hawk, Paralympic legend Tanni Grey Thompson, big wave surf champion Sebastian Steudtner and Spanish football icon Raúl.
Charl Jensel uses the sport of skateboarding to provide a pathway out of trouble for youngsters living in the Township communities of Cape Town and works for Laureus supported project Indigo Youth Youth Movement. Charl said: “These kids would honestly have been lost, they would have had nothing without the programme, now they’ve got hopes and dreams and a way out.”
Meanwhile in India, Sneh Gupta is helping to integrate youngsters with disability into a society which traditionally doesn’t accept them. Using a variety of sports and Games, the youngsters are given a chance to express themselves and develop skills to compete with able bodied athletes in cricket matches.
“There was this one kid who was a double?amputee, just below his bottom,” Sneh recalls. “He was flying through the air, just moving on his bottom using his hands. They were so happy, there was no reason to pity them because they were so full of life and happy.”
Collectively, the Real Heroes represent a universal movement that celebrates the power of sport to bring people together as a force for good. 
Raúl, who visited the Fight Back project in New York’s The Bronx, was inspired by Real Heroes he met. Reflecting on his visit, he said: “The project is led by local instructors from the area, who know and understand the kids. This really is the way to change lives and make a difference.”
Since its inception, Laureus Sport for Good has raised over €100 million and supported over 150 projects worldwide which use sport to tackle violence, discrimination and disadvantage.  Laureus Sport for Good has helped to improve the lives of millions of young people in over 35 countries and is proving that sport can change the world.  
Laureus Sport for Good is doing this by supporting sports programmes which are reinforcing education, increasing employability, promoting gender equality and empowerment and improving mental wellbeing and sexual health practices. Peace-making and conflict resolution programmes are addressing criminal behaviour and social exclusion.  By investing in monitoring, evaluation and research, Laureus Sport for Good is able to demonstrate the effectiveness of sport in achieving social transformation.
We encouraged you to spread the word and embrace the power of sport:
-       By using #RealHeroes on social media and sharing the inspirational stories available on
-       By getting involved: Donate now on or to join any of our fundraising events.
To learn more about the Real Heroes Storytelling campaign and the work of the Laureus Sport for Good Foundation, please visit

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