The event was created by Guy Laliberte, the founder of Cirque de Soleil, as a way to support the charity One Drop. For those of you that have not heard of this charity, it is a charity whose purpose is to provide clean water to underdeveloped countries around the world.
Some of you may wonder what a Texas Holdem tournament has to do with charity. In this instance, the event had a primary purpose to both raise awareness of their cause and raise money, and some serious money at that.
This event has an insane price for players to buy-in. Each player had to come up with $1 million in order to play in this event. However, 11.11% of each buy-in was taken from that money and donated directly to the charity. That is $111,111.11 from every player in the event. A total of 48 players signed up for the event and the charity received over $5.3 Million in donations just off the buy-in alone.
Clearly, only rich businessmen and poker players could afford to play in such a high-priced event, but it was amazing to see the amount of support given by a community that is usually given a bad rap based on their past and the history of some of its current players.
I know how important clean water is to everyone and many of us take that for granted. One Drop’s work attacks a base need for many in the world and their work will end up reaching more than any of us will ever know.
Laliberte’s vision for the event allowed the poker community to do something on a worldwide scale while providing a made-for-TV event for the game. While many consider it a win-win for both, the real winner in this instance will be those who lives will be changed thanks to the money raised in the event.
–In collaboration with Pokerjunkie.com