10 Celebrities Using their Fame to Benefit Charitable Causes
It’s unfortunate that when it comes to celebrities, we tend to hear more negative news about their lives than positive. So, inspired by a list published by Goodnet , I’m going to highlight some celebrities that are doing good in the world. This is a concept I’ve written about in previous posts like the 10 Most Charitable Celebrities from the 2013 Oscar nominees, the top 20 Celebrity Gone Good Part 1 (and Part 2), the 5 Celebrity Charity Events by Musicians, the 10 Celebrities Doing Interesting Things to Change the World, the 10 most charitable celebrities, the 10 Celebrities Doing Good for Women and Girls, the 10 highest paid actresses and their causes, the 10 highest paid actors and their charities, the TIFF 2013 Celebrities and the Causes They Support Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3 and the 10 people from Vanity Fair’s The New Establishment 2013. Today we’re looking at 10 celebrity power-players using their fame to benefit the latest charitable causes they support.
Image courtesy of metro.us
George Clooney: The actor/director/activist is one of the best-known philanthropists in Hollywood as he has long been a champion against the atrocities in the Sudan. In fact, he personally helps fund and spread awareness of the Satellite Sentinel Project, a satellite over the Sudan to help document the human rights abuses in the region. Wanting to spread the word and raise funds he ran a “Win a Date with George Clooney” raffle. For $10.00 people had a chance to win a trip for two to New York City to attend a taping of the Late Show with David Letterman and be Clooney’s date for the ‘Monument’s Men’ Premier. This nonprofit fundraising effort raised a reported $1.2 million for the project through Omaze which will help keep the satellite running for three months.
- Leonardo DiCaprio: The Academy Award nominee created the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation in 1998, which works “on pressing environmental and humanitarian issues through grant making, campaigning and media projects.” In May 2013 he and Christie’s auction house raised “$38.8 million through a charity art auction and donations” for environmental causes and in November 2013 his foundation donated $3million to the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) to help conserve and expand Nepal’s tiger population.
- Shakira: The singer, entertainer and judge/mentor from The Voice is also a UN Goodwill Ambassador, a member of the President’s Advisory Commission on Educational Excellence for Hispanics and the creator of the Pies Descalzos Foundation (Barefoot Foundation). In August 2013, Shakira wrote about the foundation in a HuffPost Impact blog: “We began in Colombia, raising funds and awareness and taking a hands-on, grassroots approach in collaboration with governments and other philanthropists of building and developing quality schools, of which we are currently building the sixth and servicing 6,000 children. We then built community centers within the schools so the towns, and neighboring towns, would also reap the benefits. We developed feeding programs so our students would be able to learn on a full stomach, and also so their parents had the incentive to send them to school in the first place.”
- Matt Damon: The Monument’s Men star co-founded the nonprofit Water.org, which works to provide access to safe water and sanitation in the developing countries. To help raise funds he teamed up with long-time friend and Hollywood heavyweight Ben Affleck for an Omaze online raffle with the proceeds benefitting Affleck’s East Congo Initiative and Damon’s Water.org. The $10 entry got you a chance for a prize pack which included being “flown out to Hollywood to go out with Ben Affleck and Matt Damon as their VIP guests to a private star-studded event. Flight and hotel included for two.” The raffle closed February 19th and total $ raised was not available at time of writing.
Click image to go to Amy’s speech video
Amy Poehler: The Golden Globes host supports the Worldwide Orphans Foundation and is an advocate for young women. She created Smart Girls at the Party [which] is a “rapidly expanding online network that aims to help the process of cultivating the authentic selves of young women and the young at heart.” Amy made an amazing speech at the 2013 Variety Power of Women event representing the Worldwide Orphans Foundation. Take a moment and watch it for yourself.
- Sir Paul McCartney: The music legend is an advocate for vegetarianism and supports Meatfree Mondays in the UK. This is the UK branch of the Meatless Monday movement (that Miratel also supports) that advocates giving up meat one day per week for the health of the planet. McCartney has used his fame and notoriety to support the Vegetarian Society, PETA, OneVoice and many other causes which led to him earning the VegfestUK Award for ‘Best Individual Achievement of the Decade’ in November 2013.
- Willie Nelson: The country legend was one of the founders of Farm Aid along with Neil Young and John Mellencamp “to raise awareness about the loss of family farms and to raise funds to keep farm families on their land.” With the help of his wife he created BioWillie a “biodiesel [that] is a petroleum diesel alternative made from waste vegetable oil, waste fats and seed oil crops.” BioWillie helps support local communities as it is made and sold locally.
- Lady Gaga: Mother monster created the Born This Way Foundation (BTWF) to help “to foster a more accepting society, where differences are embraced and individuality is celebrated.” She then launched the Born Brave Bus and her anthem of self-acceptance even inspired the Heal This Way book, which shared fans’ stories. Gaga, with the help of Harper’s Bazaar, is auctioning off “pieces of fashion history- the best of the [her] looks from the March issue cover shoot [of Harper’s Bazaar]” The proceeds from this eBay auction will benefit the BTWF to help empower youth.
- Angelina Jolie: Though she is one of highest paid actresses in Hollywood Jolie is also one of the most philanthropic. She is well-known for her work as a United Nations ambassador and for creating the Maddox Jolie-Pitt Foundation with partner Brad Pitt. Additionally, she recently shared her very personal health journey to educate women on the importance of being proactive with cancer prevention. She’s even launched a jewelry e, Style of Jolie, where 100% of the profits will go to charity and it has already funded an all-girls school in Afghanistan.
- Cyndi Lauper: The Tony award winner for Best Score for the musical Kinky Boots, co-founded The True Colors Fund “to inspire and engage everyone, especially straight people, to become active participants in the advancement of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender equality and to raise awareness about and bring an end to gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender youth homelessness.”
Stars have an influence that goes beyond fashion and diet and the more we celebrate the good over the nonsense, the more meaningful that influence will become.
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Miratel Solutions is a Toronto call centre, eBusiness, and letter shop mail house specializing in professional fundraising services including telephone fundraising, online fundraising, lottery services, donation caging, donation processing and other donor management services. We are committed to our CSR business values in all contact centre services and mail house operations and advancing the missions of the nonprofits we proudly serve.