Cris Cyborg raising money to help sick child ahead of historic title fight

Cris “Cyborg” Justino raising money to help a sick child ahead of her historic title fight this January.

Cris “Cyborg” Justino continues to use her platform as one of the most famous MMA fighters in the world to help others. On Monday Justino posted photos with a young boy named Ryan, who she met while training in South Africa for her Bellator debut. The boy is staying in the same condo complex that Justino is staying in during her fight camp.

According to, Ryan Burchell is in South Africa “receiving treatment for Rhabdomyosarcoma, an aggressive form of cancer which develops from skeletal muscle cells that have failed to fully differentiate” and Justino, who has always had a soft spot for children, wanted to help.


The young child “has a tumor on his pelvis and has been receiving Chemotherapy and Radiation the past few months in an attempt to shrink the tumor in hopes of eventually removing it by surgery,” the site says. This, of course, can bring unimaginable financial hardship to the family. This is where Justino stepped in.

Justino has shared a link to donate to Ryan and his family and encourages those to donate who are financially able. Every dollar counts and just $1 American converts to roughly $12 African Rand.

“The parents of Ryan are doing their best to help their son win this fight,” the site says. “His mother a full-time chiropractor has put her practice on hold to take care of her son full time, while her father is a farmer and balancing the duties while also taking care of his family. The costs of medical care [have] become a huge strain on them. Once a week the family drives four hours from their home in Louis Trichardt to Johannesburg where Ryan is able to receive his treatments.”

Justino and Ryan bonded over their daily swimming pool meetings.

Justino will return to the United States to take on Julia Budd at for the Bellator featherweight title on Jan. 25, 2020. If she defeats the reigning champion, Justino will be the first MMA champion to hold four major titles including her UFC, Strikeforce and Invicta titles.

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