herald

Tuesday 18 September 2018

Game of Thrones star Jack's heart of gold in Haiti

Actor Jack Gleeson in Haiti for the GOAL humanitarian agency
Actor Jack Gleeson in Haiti for the GOAL humanitarian agency

HE may play evil King Joffrey Baratheon in HBO's Game of Thrones, but it seems actor Jack Gleeson has a heart of gold.

Cork native Jack, who plays the ruler of the Westeros in the show, demonstrated his softer and more humanitarian side when he paid a visit to the Caribbean island of Haiti this week.

Jack visited different communities, chatted to locals and hung out with school kids during his time on the impoverished island. He also wandered through some of the building sites where volunteers were rebuilding houses and constructing sanitation systems.

Impressed

Gleeson's uncle Tim previously worked for GOAL in Somalia, Ethiopia and India.

"He was one of the first doctors to go out with GOAL," Jack explained. "He gave lifesaving help and I'm trying to replicate the work he did. I'm impressed by GOAL's long-term commitment to the people of Haiti."

Jack spent four days on the island leaving last night. Tonight he will head to the GOAL USA Benefit Ball in New York where he will speak about his trip.

GOAL has been working in Haiti since 2010, when they responded to the earthquake that killed more than 230,000 people and left 1.5 million homeless.

Jack, who studies at Trinity College Dublin, shot to fame on the hugely popular TV show in 2011.

He says working on the show is the perfect summer job. "Game of Thrones films during the summer, we only start up in October so it's linked up really well. It's been really easy to manage."

Jack says fans often struggle differentiating between fiction and real life.

"I've been called everything under the sun at this stage, well my character has. People just see me and they kind of have a guttural response," he said. These recent images may help in shaking that evil image.

hnews@herald.ie

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