10 Celebrities Fighting Hunger in America Slideshow
October 20, 2011
“Every single day, millions of older Americans are forced to make a choice between food, medicine, and utilities. It’s going to be a team effort, and it’s not going to be easy, but we can solve this problem,” said NASCAR driver Jeff Gordon in regards to his and AARP Foundation’s “Drive to End Hunger” campaign, a three-year initiative to address the growing problem of hunger among older Americans.
Oscar-winning actor Jeff Bridges is a pioneer in the celebrity fight against hunger; he founded the End to Hunger Network in 1983. “My profession is getting into other people’s shoes,” he said, explaining his empathy for parents who can’t provide for their children in a speech for Share Our Strength’s “No Kid Hungry” campaign. “I have another kind of hunger, a hunger to contribute.”
Wikimedia Commons/Marcela Cataldi Cipolla
John Lennon inspired the world with his music, and his wife Yoko Ono has worked to continue to effect change on the word by creating a hunger campaign “Imagine: There’s No Hunger” based on the title of his famed song "Imagine." The global campaign’s purpose is to raise money and awareness about childhood hunger and poverty in America.
Ben Affleck is more than just a pretty face. An avid activist with deep roots in the Eastern Congo Initiative, the ONE Campaign, and the “Stay Close” campaign for LGBT families, he has strived to create an awareness about hunger in America and around the world. Along with Ellen DeGeneres in 2006 and more recently, with his friend and Good Will Hunting co-star Matt Damon, Ben is one of the spokespeople for Feeding America’s “Hunger Action Month” campaign.
A unique campaigner, Matt Damon likes to get his hands dirty in his efforts. He has defended teachers during a Washington rally for better wages and has backed water and hunger efforts in Darfur. He is on the founding team of Water.org to voice clean water initiatives in Africa and Damon is currently a spokesperson for Feeding America’s “Hunger Action Month” campaign with buddy Ben Affleck and Taye Diggs.
Apparently the band that saves together stays together. Maroon 5 has executed various efforts in the past few years to aid the fight against hunger in America. These include holding food drives in each of the cities on their concert tour as well as creating a Snapple flavor, “Tea Will Be Loved,” with $250,000 of proceeds going to Feeding America.
George Clooney is famous for his looks, flicks, and love life, but also for doing more than talking the talk. He has donated millions to the World Food Programme, works to fight poverty through “Realizing the Dream,” and created an alliance with his Ocean's 11 buddies for Not On Our Watch, an organization whose purpose is to stop genocide in Sudan. Clooney has also recently participated in Bono’s ONE Campaign against hunger with a PSA.
The man, the myth, the legend — what doesn’t Bono have his hands in? A pal to presidents, a leader in the fight against poverty, and a three-time Nobel Peace Prize nominee — the U2 singer cofounded the ONE campaign, (RED), and EDUN, a clothing company that strives to stimulate trade with poverty-stricken countries. His current current campaign for ONE is gearing to end hunger globally, called The "F" Word.
Like other celebrities, Christina has gone the PSA route, lending her voice to a recent one about child hunger. “After I had my son, Max, I knew I wanted to get involved in causes that help children,” said Aguilera.
So now she is also a spokesperson for Yum! Brands World Hunger Relief. “When I learned how millions of children go to bed hungry, my only response was, ‘What can I do to help?" The brand's main initiatives are to raise awareness to the Unite Nations World Food Programme. Since she has been an ambassador, she has helped raise $50 million.
In honor of World Food Day, Rapper Curtis "50 Cent" Jackson has linked his energy drink brand Street King with the World Food Program's campaign to end hunger. “These days, we hear a lot about clean energy, and efficiency, but this is about human energy, energy that's fueling change,” he said. The “Hustle 1 Million Meals” campaign is part of his Street King mission to feed 1 billion children in 5 years.