Filipino boxer and Congressman Manny Pacquiao has donated roughly $604,000 to build a housing project with 150 units for the homeless people in Bales village, in Saranggani province of the Philippines.
The 36-year-old boxing star spent his own money for the project, dubbed as 'Pacman Village', and gave glory to God through his gesture of helping the needy.
"Give thanks to God for what you have received today. It's a gift from Him," Pacquiao was quoted as saying by PhilBoxing.com. "He's just using me to help you. Take good care of this property and don't sell it."
The housing units of 150 houses will be completed by February next year, around the time of his 37th birthday.
He is preparing to fight one last time in his life next year in April and will run for a senatorial seat in the May 2016 national elections.
Pacquiao is planning to build some 600 units in the four-hectare property over the course of time.
"There are still lots of spaces here where we can build more houses. I'm targeting a total of 600 housing units to accommodate more homeless residents here," he said.
Project contractor Ricardo A. Marcellana said that $604,000 (PHP 28.5 million) was only the construction cost which did not include the cost of the land bought about two years ago.
The boxer and lawmaker asked the residents of his constituency to do careful thinking before selecting any candidate for the 2016 national elections.
"Vote for candidates who are competent and with a good heart. The future of this country depends on the kind of leaders we choose," he said. "You should be proud of me as your congressman. I don't steal government money, in fact, I'm spending my own resources to help you. I neither sell my principle nor my vote in Congress."
Pacquiao had told the Christian Post about a year ago that being involved in politics is his calling, even above boxing, because he wants to provide opportunities for his fellowmen to improve their lives.
"I want to provide opportunities for my fellow countrymen that will improve their situations. As a politician, I want to help create jobs so that I can bring them out of their poverty. I want to give them hope. Boxing has been my passion, but public service is my calling. I love my boxing, but I realize now that is not what my life is all about."
The founder and CEO of boxing promotions company Top Rank, Bob Arum, told ESPN in detail why Pacquiao wants to retire, and what his aspirations are.
"We talked very seriously, and he said, 'Bob, hopefully, by the middle of May I will have been elected Senator in the Philippines, and at that point I cannot engage in boxing because I need to focus on the Senate and I have to be in attendance.' Manny told me this fight on April 9 will be his last fight."
"There are hundreds of congressmen, but if he wins the Senate seat he has to be there to do the work. They do the real work in the Senate in the Philippines, not just make a lot of [expletive] speeches like they do in the Congress. It's a real job, and if Manny is serious about wanting to be president, these six years in the Senate would be like an audition, and for him to show his people that he really is a serious politician."