He’s gone from “Good Will Hunting” to earning goodwill.
Ben Affleck, the Academy Award-winning actor and director, took center stage last night at The People’s Choice Awards 2015 to accept the Favorite Humanitarian Award.
“I’ve been called a lot of things in my life. But I’m not sure humanitarian has ever been one of them. To be honest, it’s something I have a hard time accepting because I’ve had the privilege of working alongside so many incredible people in Congo and all over the world who are far more deserving.”
The actor, who shined in a stylish charcoal three-piece suit, navy tie and brown-burnished lace-ups, was recognized for his work in Eastern Congo, where millions of people live under the constant threat of violence and disease.
Affleck has not only donated time and money to bettering conditions there, he’s also documented the residents’ everyday travails on film.
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For the last few years, the actor has helped further awareness of the region’s hardships by stepping into the footwear business: He has partnered with Toms Shoes’ Blake Mycoskie.
The Los Angeles-based one-for-one company donated $5 from each pair of limited-edition shoes sold to Affleck’s Eastern Congo Initiative, whose goal is to help fund programs for families and children. The shoes featured designs inspired by Congolese textiles.
“Getting involved in something, helping others, improving the fabric of the universe — I believe if you do that, even just a little bit, I think you’ll find your life gets better, too,” Affleck said in 2012.
While introducing Affleck last night, Amy Adams voiced a similar sentiment.
“The same qualities that make my friend Ben Affleck a phenomenal actor, director and writer are also what make him an extraordinary humanitarian,” Adams said. “He puts his heart and soul into everything he does.”