"In our quest to celebrate "Star Power" at its best, Celebrity Society Magazine turn to the leading source for celebrity charity news, Look to the Stars, to spotlight a number of extraordinary individuals who have applied their energies in highly personal and direct ways to supporting the wider causes close to their hearts."
Celebrities on Health
Although actress Marlee Matlin has been a national spokesperson for the American Red Cross for years, raising public awareness for humanitarian help and disaster relief around the world, she has also received frequent recognition for her involvement in many other causes and charities. The Academy Award winner serves on the boards of the Starlight Foundation, which brightens the lives of terminally ill children, and of Very Special Arts, an organization that aims to provide every young person with a disability to high quality arts learning experiences. Deaf since the age of 18 months, Matlin was instrumental in establishing congressional legislation requiring that all televisions manufactured in the US be equipped with Closed Caption technology. And mindful of others' disabilities, she is an honorary board member for Easter Seals, which offers services, therapies and treatments to disabled children and adults. Matlin is also on the board of the Children Affected by AIDS Foundation, and is among the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation's impressive array of celebrity supporters keen to further work countering mother-to-child transmission of AIDS.
British comic actor Hugh Laurie has been a regular face on BBC's Comic Relief charity specials, and he has gone on to co-found The Band From TV, a charity musical group composed of TV stars. The band's charity trust provides funding and resources to projects including the Pediatric Epilepsy Project, Save the Children and The Art of Elysium. But as a sometimes sufferer of clinical depression, Laurie's charitable passion seems to be mental illness. Laurie and the supporting cast of House, in which he stars, are selling t-shirts featuring the screen psychologist's truism "Everbody Lies," and donating the profits to mental health charities. The National Alliance on Mental Illness is a primary beneficiary, and is dedicated to improving the quality of life of mental illness sufferers, and to researching methods of prevention and, ultimately, cures for mental illness.
Heidi Klum is putting her supermodel status to good charitable use. With an eye for both high fashion and women's health issues, she also demonstrates a knack for combining the two. In the past few months alone she has made several donations to charities of the dresses she has worn to assorted celebrity functions. Her Oscar gown went to the Red Dress Program, and Klum also modeled at a fundraiser for that charity, which raises awareness about heart disease in women. Another of her garments went to the '27 Dresses' auction benefiting the Lavender Trust breast cancer charity. Klum also found time to attend Madonna's gala for Raising Malawi, which provides food, water, medical care and schooling to orphans. She's also a supporter of UNICEF, skin cancer charity IMCG (for which she modeled a t-shirt), and the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation, which aims to prevent infants from contracting AIDS from their mothers and discover treatments for other life-threatening pediatric illnesses.
© Elizabeth Willoughby 2008
photos supplied by Celebrity Society