Shakira has a partner for life in soccer star Gerard Piqué. The Colombian singer opened up about her Spanish beau's unwavering support for her on Tuesday, while helping launch the Barranquilla School Project in Barcelona, Spain. "As a partner, he supports me in everything I do," the 40-year-old said in Spanish. "It is an important part of my well-being, as well as I of his and his joy that projects on the field," adding, "We talk about every aspect of our lives and work is one of them obviously."
Shakira and the 30-year-old professional athlete, who have been an item since 2010, share sons Milan, four, and Sasha, two. "Pique is the most sensible man I've ever met," she said. "Maybe I'm a bit more nervous at home than he is and he helps calm me down. The mum-of-two turned heads stepping out in an all-black, lace and leather ensemble for the March 28 charity launch. The Hips Don't Lie singer's foundation - the Pies Descalzos Foundation whose objective is to promote quality public education for vulnerable children in Colombia - teamed up with her boyfriend’s soccer club, FC Barcelona, and "la Caixa" Banking Foundation to build a school in one of the most conflict-ridden districts in Barranquilla, El Bosque.
"In this community that we want to help, 20 percent of the children suffer from chronic malnutrition," Shakira said during a press conference. "Most countries in conflict zones do not have programs focused on sports and we know that physical activity is extraordinary for transmitting values, which is crucial to our work in education." The philanthropist also noted: "I was born and raised in a Colombia in conflict. To see how lives are being transformed instead of being trapped in a continual cycle of poverty is liberating. It shows that there is a way out."
The school, which is scheduled to open in two years, will be the seventh institution built in Colombia by Shakira's foundation, which was founded in 1997. The singer said: "When we started to build schools in Colombia 20 years ago, we chose remote areas where there was absolutely nothing at all - no infrastructure, roads or even potable water. We built schools where the government was absent and thousands of children didn't have access to quality education. The transformation was immediate - jobs were generated, malnutrition plummeted and the students responded well academically."
"Investing in education, when it works, is the best strategy to eradicate poverty," Shakira concluded. "I was born and raised in a Colombia in conflict. To see how lives are being transformed instead of being trapped in a continual cycle of poverty is liberating. It shows that there is a way out."