Brad Pitt’s good looks, charm, and acting chops made him one of the biggest movie stars in the world but it’s his dedicated philanthropic work that sets him apart from many working actors today.
While Pitt’s most notable work has come alongside Angelina Jolie, the 52-year-old was already in the giving mood before he met his future wife.
Let’s take a look at how the Moneyball star has left a meaningful mark on the world.
Advocating for Global Health
In 2004 (a year before he became romantically linked with Jolie), Pitt joined U2 frontman Bono as a spokesman for the ONE Campaign. The actor pushed for the United States to dedicate more of its federal budget toward helping those stricken with disease (specifically AIDS) and living in poverty in Africa.
Pitt continues to advocate for underprivileged people in developing countries and makes frequent trips to Africa with his wife.
In 2005, he narrated the six-part PBS series Rx for Survival: A Global Health Challenge, which showcases the success stories and hurdles faced by those seeking better health for people around the world.
Brad Pitt Lends a Hand in Haiti
In addition to aiding health and community development in the country, Pitt and Jolie focused on improving education for children and paid a visit to a school during their trip.
“To have these people grace our country is a beautiful thing,” Jean said about the pair in 2006.
Make It Right
Pitt’s most recognized charity work began after the devastation from Hurricane Katrina.
In 2007, Pitt established the Make It Right foundation to assist families who lost their home during the deadly natural disaster in New Orleans in the summer of 2005.
Pitt’s organization centered on restoring the Lower Ninth Ward neighborhood of New Orleans where floodwaters broke through levee walls and wiped out homes.
Since the devastating hurricane, the foundation, in partnership with Global Green USA, has built over 100 colorful, architecturally unique, eco-friendly, and affordable homes in the Ninth Ward.
“I drive into the neighborhood and I see people on their porch,” Pitt said in 2015, “And I ask them how is their house treating them? And they say, ‘Good.’ And I say what’s your utility bill? And they’ll throw something out like, ’24 bucks’ or something, and I feel fantastic.”
“It’s a reminder of why we’re there. It’s a reminder of why we push like we push. It makes it all worthwhile,” he added.
Pitt fell in love with the city so much that he and Jolie bought a home in the French Quarter district.
In addition to building houses in The Big Easy, Make It Right has constructed homes, apartments and communities in Newark, NJ, Kansas City, MO, and the Fort Peck Reservation in Montana.
Brad Pitt Partners with Ocean’s Eleven Co-Stars with a Great Cause
In real-life, the actors came together to form the charity organization Not On Our Watch, which aims to defend human rights and stop the horrible genocides occurring throughout the world, particularly in Darfur.
According to the organization’s website, Not On Our Watch has contributed over $7.5 million in funds towards humanitarian efforts and emergency programs in the Darfur region.
Through his charity, which he started with Jolie in 2006, Pitt helps impoverished people (particularly children) around the globe and dedicates efforts to protecting natural resources and conserving wildlife.
Pitt and Jolie’s first charitable deed under the Jolie-Pitt Foundation banner was in the form of a $1 million donation to Doctors Without Borders and Global Action for Children. In 2006 alone, the couple donated more than $8 million to charity.
They’ve also donated $1 million towards relief efforts and refugee organizations in Chad and Sudan.
Maddox Jolie-Pitt Foundation
Three of Pitt and Jolie’s six children were adopted from foreign countries and they definitely received the giving traits from mom and dad
In early 2016, while Angelina was shooting a film in South East Asia, the couple’s oldest daughters Shiloh and Zahara donated $200 worth of new clothes to a poor Cambodian family, whom they just met.
And through the Maddox Jolie-Pitt Foundation (named after their Cambodian-born son), the Jolie-Pitt family works with villagers and local governments to improve living conditions and create vibrant and healthy communities.
Long after he’s gone, Brad Pitt’s career will live on through whatever technology is playing movies and his humanitarian legacy will thrive thanks to his children and the millions of lives he’s helped.
Photo Credit: Flickr