Tom Hanks is one of those actors in Hollywood that everyone likes, you just can't help it. He has that personality that just shines, a kindness about him, and a timeless charm and charisma that has spanned over the course of his very long career. He may also be one of the most humble people put on this earth.
While Tom Hanks is mostly known for his iconic roles, he has been involved in a whopping 28 — twenty-eight! — different charities over the course of his career, while looking for none of the praise that a lot of the celebrities get when doing their charity work. In fact, Hanks has been so adamant about not shining the spotlight on himself for his charity work that it's not surprising most people don't know how generous he actually is. Here are five of the projects he's most heavily involved with:
5. Chabot Space And Science Center
He actually visited Chabot when he was a student, so it makes sense that he would choose to give back to this organization. It is a non-profit science center whose mission is to inspire and educate students about space.
4. Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric Aids Foundation
This non-profit is dedicated to preventing pediatric HIV infection and eliminating pediatric AIDS through research, advocacy and prevention, care, and treatment programs.
3. Hole In The Wall Gang
This summer camp allows children ages 7–15 who are seriously ill to attend summer camp with their siblings for a week while still having their medical work done.
His favorite of his charity work, this is a non-profit organization that designs, manufactures and distributes solar and wind-up media players and radios for classroom and group listening. These are distributed to South Africa, and used to help children in their school work.
1. Elie Weisel Foundation For Humanity
The organization is meant to combat indifference, intolerance and injustice through dialogue in youth-focused programs. Tom Hanks was actually honored through this foundation, but was modest about his work when talking about it:
“If I wasn’t an actor who had done pretty good in some movies, I would be here serving the canapes for somebody else getting it tonight. (I feel) very lucky, very blessed.”
Rita Wilson, his wife, put it best when she stated:
“I’ve always been proud of the work that Tom does. He’s very discreet, he doesn’t make a big deal about it and he’s very consistent…I’m in awe of how he handles it.”
While Tom may be best known for his roles (check out the trailer for his upcoming film Inferno, below), it is nice to see someone who has been in the limelight so long stay humble and do things, not for the recognition, but because he just wants to make a difference.
To see the entire list of Tom's charity work, as well as to get involved, just click here.
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