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Six Oscar Nominees' Favorite Nonprofits

Posted by Andrew Littlefield on Feb 16, 2015 8:30:00 AM

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You know what would be cool? If reporters on the Oscar’s red carpet didn’t ask “Who are you wearing?” but “Who are you supporting?”

Sometimes, we all get a little too obsessed with celebrity gossip, but movie stars’ propensity to support nonprofit causes can often bring much needed attention to deserving organizations.

You’re not likely to hear “Who are you supporting?” on any red carpet show, so we’ll just do it here instead! Let’s check out what causes some of this year’s nominees are supporting.

Bradley Cooper (American Sniper)

Cause: The Hole in the Wall Gang Camp

Few movie stars have had a bigger impact on the nonprofit world than Paul Newman. His Newman’s Own Foundation has given away millions of dollars to all sorts of causes (all while making delicious salad dressing). One of Newman’s philanthropic projects is The Hole in the Wall Gang Camp, which is a camp for seriously ill children.

Which brings us to Bradley Cooper. Get this: Cooper served as a volunteer cabin counselor in 2006! Can you imagine having Bradley Cooper as your camp counselor? Pretty cool.

This past summer, Cooper joined the Board of Directors for the camp, furthering his involvement.

Steve Carell (Foxcatcher)

Cause: Night of Too Many Stars

Steve Carell has been called “Hollywood’s Nice Guy,” and it’s easy to see why. He always seems down to Earth and kind.

So it’s no surprise that Carell gets involved with nonprofit causes. One of my favorites is the “Night of Too Many Stars.” Prior to working here at WeDidIt, I used to work with children and adolescents with autism in a clinic setting, which is exactly who the Night of Too Many Stars supports! This fundraising event, organized and broadcast by Comedy Central, supports the nonprofit New York Collaborates for Autism. Plus, who doesn’t love some good stand-up comedy? What’s the deal with airline food?!

Juilanne Moore (Still Alice)

Cause - Save the Children

I will forever root for Juilanne Moore to win any award she’s nominated for simply for her role as Maude Lebowski in The Big Lebowski.

She has also been highly involved in the star-studded nonprofit Save The Children. Save the Children provides healthcare services, education, disaster relief, and more to children in need.

Moore has said it was her experience as a child, growing up as an “army brat” and living all over the country, that exposed her to the poverty some children are born into. It was this experience that motivated her use her celebrity to do something about this problem.

Emma Stone (Birdman)

Cause - Multiple

Emma Stone made headlines in the summer of 2014 when she used the paparazzi to draw attention to several nonprofits she supports. While out for breakfast in New York City, Stone and fellow actor Andrew Garfield noticed photographers congregating outside the restaurant. They quickly wrote notes calling attention to several nonprofit websites and used them to cover their faces. The clever move was reported on by celebrity gossip sites across the internet, and Stone and Garfield succeeded in drawing attention to their pet causes!

Those websites, by the way, were:

Keira Knightley (The Imitation Game)

Cause - Oxfam

In the summer of 2014, Keira Knightley traveled to South Sudan with Oxfam to help raise public awareness for the conflict and struggle faced by the people of that region. Of the experience, Knightley said:

“When those refugees asked me, ‘Who are you?’ I really, really wished I could have said, ‘I’m a doctor,’ or something else useful. Instead I told them, ‘I am somebody who is going to ask people to give lots of money to Oxfam, so they can help you.’

Benedict Cumberbatch (The Imitation Game)

Cause - The Prince’s Trust

English actor Benedict Cumberbatch serves as an ambassador for The Prince’s Trust, which seeks to assist young men and women with finding jobs and education opportunities. On one occasion, Cumberbatch helped a group of program participants decorate a school for individuals with special needs.

It’s always good to see stars putting their fame to use for a good cause! Has your nonprofit ever benefited from some star power? Let us know in the comments!

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Image credit: Flickr user Davidlohr Bueso, CC BY 2.0

Topics: Nonprofits

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