While the mainstream media elaborates on the latest celebrity divorce or drug problem, many Hollywood stars are making our world a more positive place. Here are some examples:
Cindy Crawford made appearances over the July 4th weekend in Madison Wisconsin to raise awareness of pediatric cancer. Crawford is the honorary chairwoman of Kids with Courage which was having a 4th reunion to celebrate childhood cancer survivors. She also took part in similar reunions here in 1993, 1998 and 2003. The University of Wisconsin indicates Cindy Crawford has been contributing time and money to the UW Pedriatric Oncology program for nearly 20 years.
Earvin “Magic” Johnson continues his efforts to prevent and fight AIDs. In conjunction with National HIV Testing Day, the Magic Johnson Foundation, and Abbott launched a new Facebook group to further engage young adults in the I Stand With Magic program and its efforts to fight the spread of HIV/AIDS in the African-American community.
By utilizing Facebook’s wide-reaching social media network, the I Stand With Magic program is continuing its commitment to reach young people nationwide and encourage them to get educated, get tested and seek treatment for HIV. The Facebook group, provides a new opportunity for individuals to personally engage, educate and urge their family, friends and colleagues across Facebook’s active online community to protect their health by knowing their HIV status — the first and most important step in the fight against the HIV epidemic.
Magic and his wife have also made a series of Public Service Announcements targeting the African- American and other minority communities where almost 50% of new HIV infection are occurring.
Pierce Brosnan recently donated over $1 million to help the environment. The Irish actor, who now lives in Hawaii with his wife Keely and their children, has become a dedicated ‘green’ campaigner in recent years, receiving an Environmental Leadership Award from the Green Cross organization in 1997. The star has set up a trust with his wife, which donates funds to eco-friendly organizations — over $1 million so far. Brosnan urges us to help the cause in our own way: “People can give back by donating to offset emissions such as planting trees and paying carbon tax when traveling in environmentally sensitive areas.”
Will Smith focuses on inner city families with his wife, Jada Smith, helping the less fortunate with a number of critical issues: violence prevention, substance abuse, and education. The Will and Jada Smith Family Foundation funds charitable organizations in Baltimore and Smith’s native city of Philadelphia. The Foundation supports inner-city community development, encourages youth educational projects, and works with under-privileged kids and their families. Smith has said that more than anything he wants to carry himself in a way that would make his family proud.
In addition to his local community work, Smith and his wife have donated significant time, work, and money to helping the suffering families and children in South Africa. This spring Smith hosted the Nelson Mandela AIDS benefit concert in George, South Africa. Mandela has been one of his heroes for a long time because people like Mandela inspired Will to believe that “Greatness is in each and every one of us. You just have to decide to embrace it.” Ever an optimist, Smith learned early on from his family that anyone can achieve greatness with enough hard work and persistence.
Celine Dion continues her long efforts to combat cystic fibrosis. Celine Dion had been a leader in efforts to address Cystic Fibrosis since 1982, promoting public awareness of the disease on an international level. Cystic Fibrosis is a disease that usually develops in early childhood, affecting the lungs, sweat glands and the digestive system. The singer/songwriter has been dedicated to the cause since her adolescence and currently holds the position of the National Celebrity Patron for the Canadian Cystic Fibrosis Foundation (a position held since 1993.). She has hosted benefit concerts, attended press conferences, and addressed the disease in some of her songs. Her hope is to find a cure or control for the disease in the very near future. It is her belief that her dedication to this cause, and the dedication of many others, can and will make a difference.