Spirit Day and Hey St Jude Have Celebrities Uniting to Raise Funds and Awareness for Worthy CausesFundraising, Fundraising Services, Lottery fundraising, News, Non-profit fundraising, Online Fundraising, Philanthropy, Telephone Fundraising | Elyse | October 19, 2012 at 12:01 am
In the past I’ve looked at the connection between celebrities and the causes they support and how both can benefit from the association. I’ve featured the charities supported by TIFF 2012 attendees (Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3), the 10 Top Forbes Power Celebrities, the 10 Highest Paid Celebrities from Forbes Under 30 List, 10 Top Celebrity Charitable Contributions Based on Publicity Value, the 10 Highest Paid Actors from Forbes List and 5 of the Highest Paid Celebrity Couples. Today I am continuing with this theme and highlighting a few current nonprofit fundraising initiatives that celebrities are participating in to raise much needed funds and awareness.
Spirit Day was founded in 2010 by Canadian teenager Brittany McMillan in response to the young LGBT people who had taken their own lives and it is a day to accept and celebrate all for who and what they are. Observed annually, individuals and organizations are asked to participate by wearing purple, which symbolizes spirit on the rainbow flag. Many celebrities have come out in support of this important event driven by GLAAD, GLSEN and The Trevor Project including Celebrity blogger Perez Hilton, Chaz Bono, Margaret Cho, Fran Drescher, Shaquille O’Neal, George Takei, Wendy Williams, Mario Lopez, Pauly D, Maria Menounos, Mary Murphy, Judith Light and Cesar Milan to name a few.
Corporations that are participating include AMC Entertainment, AT&T, CNBC, Citi, Comcast, NBCUniversal, Delta Air Lines, Ernst & Young LLP, Facebook, Hewlett-Packard Company, Hyatt, McGraw-Hill Companies, Miratel Solutions, Mobli, Nielsen, Omnicom Group, Pepsico, PWC, Saatchi & Saatchi, StumbleUpon, Toyota Financial Services, Tumblr, Viacom, Warner Bros., Wells Fargo, Yahoo! and Zenith Optimedia. Also, organizations including Major League Soccer, MLS Group, The National Basketball Association (NBA), Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA), the BULLY Movie, The Bully Project, Human Rights Campaign, It Gets Better Project, the National Bullying Prevention Center by PACER; Parents, Family and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG), Straight But Not Narrow and Youth Empowered to Act (YETA) are participating. Many others will also be participating by taking the pledge, wearing purple and supporting the cause.
Hey St. Jude
Celebrating its 50th Anniversary in 2012, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital has always been able to rely on celebrities to support this leading facility “where no family ever pays.” St Jude’s vision is that “no child is denied treatment based on race, religion or a family’s ability to pay” and the facility has become a “world leader in advancing the treatment and prevention of catastrophic diseases in children.” Founded in 1962 by Danny Thomas, an internationally known comedic star of film and television, Thomas regularly reached out to his fellow entertainers for early fundraising efforts that featured concerts with entertainers like Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Elvis Presley, Sammy Davis Jr., Dinah Shore and Jack Benny. As time went on, celebrities have continued to give their name, time and talent to raise awareness and funds for St. Jude to this very day.
Tony Thomas, the son of Danny Thomas, heard Hey Jude by The Beatles on the radio one day and was struck with an idea to merge the classic song with his beloved St Jude. He immediately went to work on this project enlisting his network of celebrities to participate in the #HeySt. Jude chorus and he was quite successful. Celebrities appearing in the video included Tony’s sister Marlo Thomas, newly appointed American Idol judge Keith Urban, Jordin Sparks, John Hamm, Jennifer Westfeldt, Betty White, John Rich, Darius Rucker, Michael Strahan, Dr. Oz, Jimmy Kimmel, Shaun White, Ellen Degeneres, Jennifer Aniston, Robin Williams, Michael Jordan and many more stars along with the staff all singing the Beatles classic “Hey Jude.” The real stars of the video, however, are the kids of St. Jude who appear smiling and singing throughout. If that doesn’t move you to give, I’m not sure what could. A donation of $35.00 will get you one of the t-shirts from the video too.
The influence of these celebrities and organizations with the power of social media in reaching out to their network is a powerful combination for raising awareness and funds for these worthy causes.
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.