Roberto “Cyborg” Abreu’s philanthropy knows no bounds. Although he enjoys giving back to his friends, family, and students on a regular basis, Cyborg has really stepped it up this holiday season.
Recently, he held a seminar at his gym, Fight Sports! South Beach, in honor of Will Ribeiro, a WEC bantamweight fighter who suffered a near-fatal motorcycle accident in 2008. Initial reports from his doctor gave Ribeiro only a fifty-fifty chance of surviving his injuries, but over time, his condition has improved. However, what has not gotten better is his way of life, and he needs financial help to assist with his ongoing medical and personal costs.
Cyborg, who had never met Ribeiro before, read an article about him in GRACIEMAG and the fighter’s battle touched a chord inside of him. “I really felt for him,” he says, “Especially because I’m in the middle of the same environment he is. I can’t imagine how he must feel right now. To be on top; at the peak; and then for him to have to stop at the best time of his life because of a bad accident…I don’t know…I just wanted to help him. I wish I could do more.”
Cyborg continues, “He’s not my friend – I’ve never seen him in my life. I truly just want to do my part. I think people should care more about other people and try to help. Not because of any injuries – just because you should. It’s the best feeling in the world when you can give a little bit of you to the next person or to an animal or nature.”
Cyborg stands behind his words of wisdom. A couple of weeks ago, he and Eliane Carotta, of Sanatura Yoga Studio, which is based in his Fight Sports! gym, organized a day-long “conscious attitude”/beach clean-up event for his students.
The day started with an Acro Yoga class led by Arianne Traverso, exercises on the ball with black belt Marcel Goncalves, then a guided meditation with Eliane Carotta (specializing in Yoga for fighters), and ended with everyone getting together and cleaning the sands of Miami Beach. All proceeds from the event went to: ECOMB (www.ecomb.org), a non-profit organization that preserves the beaches of Miami Beach.
Cyborg thinks that every act of good will can change your perspective in life, along with others’ attitudes. “When you have a good attitude, the people around you say, ‘I should do that, too,’” he says, “People start changing their perceptions. In the world of Jiu-Jitsu, there are a lot of good people who want to help, and I felt it was time to help Will Ribeiro. The seminar was one way to do that.”
Cyborg’s held a two-hour open mat and all the Avengers’s guys were there. He then gave a two-hour seminar, for which he charged a thirty-dollar minimum fee per person. “It was up to the individual to decide how much more than that he or she wanted to donate to Ribeiro’s cause,” Cyborg says, “One hundred percent of the money is being donated to Will. He lives in Brazil, so he wasn’t at the seminar, but I will make sure he gets all the proceeds from the event.”
If you would like to assist with Cyborg’s support of fellow fighter Will Ribeiro, he has an account set up where you can send a donation:
Will Marcos Pessoa Ribeiro
Bank Caixa Economica Federal
Cyborg believes that giving back to others is the only way to improve ourselves and the world at large. “If every one of us did our part, the world would be a better place.”