Celebrities often use their fame to sell products or help raise awareness to causes they feel passionate about. Oprah is well known for her school for girls in South Africa, Madonna has been helping Malawian orphans and vulnerable children for years with her Raising Malawi Foundation and Angelina Jolie is constantly traveling to crisis areas doing humanitarian work.
But celebrity activism is not new. Who can forget Bob Geldof’s famous Live Aid campaign in the 80’s or Princess Diana’s efforts for landmine clearance in Angola?
The Right Celebrity-Charity Alliance
When a celebrity supports a charity, donates time or becomes an ambassador, it creates a hype around it and draws public attention to the cause they are helping. With celebrities, charities can make a bigger impact, reach worldwide audiences and even enjoy more exposure in the media.
Nonetheless, it is important to choose someone with a positive image and passion for what is being advocated – a celebrity that wears fur would never be a good match for animal’s rights organizations like PETA, but someone that actively supports wildlife, like Ellen DeGeneres is a perfect match.
Celebrities like Leonardo DiCaprio, known for his efforts on environmental protection or Bono who’s political and peace activism is well known around the world, are deeply invested in their causes and, therefore, seen as experts on that field. The public perceives them as more believable and important than other less expert celebrities or celebrities with a negative image that can trivialize the philanthropic subject.
For charities, having a celebrity affiliated with their cause can be very beneficial, as they get a spokesperson to actively amplify their position and message and help with fundraising. According to a research by the Rutgers School of Business – Camden, when celebrities associate themselves with charitable organizations, they increase financial donations from the public. This is also a valuable partnership for celebrities, as they have the opportunity to make their voices heard and support a cause they believe in, helping those in need and getting positive feedback from the public and media.
The Importance of Celebrity Engagement in Crisis Moments
Having a celebrity charity concert or charity event can not only increase people’s awareness but also make the audience feel heard and validated, empowered by the experience and connected with the cause.
Take for example Ariana Grande’s One Love Manchester. After the tragic terrorist bombing at the end of her concert at the Manchester Arena, Ariana hosted a benefit concert to help the victims of the attack that included performances by superstars Justin Bieber, Katy Perry, Miley Cyrus and Coldplay and raised more than 17 million pounds. The concert was held in Manchester a few weeks after the attack and was praised for helping the city heal and move forward from such a terrible moment.
In 2010, when an earthquake caused great damage in Haiti, actor George Clooney and singer Wyclef Jean organized Hope For Haiti, a telethon to raise funds for an emergency relief operation. The event was broadcast all over the world and had performances from powerhouse names like Madonna, Sting, Stevie Wonder, and Beyoncé. Hollywood stars including Jack Nicholson, Meg Ryan, Brad Pitt, Justin Timberlake and Robert De Niro supported the cause and answered calls from people donating money for the fund.
Nicole Kidman, Morgan Freeman and Halle Berry encouraged pledges for donations and Leonardo DiCaprio was one of the several stars that donated 1 million dollars to help Haiti. In the end, more than 61 million dollars were raised for the cause.
Celebrity charity Auctions
Celebrities can also give back by offering signed or personal items and experiences like spending a few hours or having dinner with fans to raise money for charity. This is a win-win situation, as charities receive more visibility and higher donations, while fans get a cherished reward and help an important cause.
Celebrities are unquestionably a driving force for charity fundraising and an important way to support causes. Their influence not only raises awareness a lot faster but impacts more people. To bid on a special celebrity item or experience go to www.esolidar.com