Everyone loves the holidays because it's a time to see family and friends and reflect on the year that passed. But celebs love the holidays because it gives them an opportunity to lend their famous hands to a good cause. Here are a few celebs who are using their celebrity to give back in a big way this holiday season.
Ana de la Reguera
Heartbroken by the massive damage that a hurricane caused when it ripped through her home state of Veracruz, Mexico in September, Eastbound & Down star Ana de la Reguera started a nonprofit organization called VeracruzANA, which aims to rebuild her home town. The beautiful actress recently told us what it was like to visit her former hometown following Hurricane Karl, which left at least 11 people dead and affected some 500,000 victims in 120 municipalities. “I just came back from Veracruz yesterday. There was a very bad category 4 hurricane in my hometown of Veracruz and the whole state was devastated," said de la Reguera. "I was there for three weeks to help. But the situation is not easy right now."
Make It or Break It star, Josie Loren is no stranger to giving back. The UCLA Senior recently hosted Relay for Life, an event for The American Cancer Society. "I'm always talking about The American Cancer Society," said Loren. "It’s important to get the word out because it’s a disease we’re all affected by. Even if we’re not suffering from it, we all have family members and friends who have been affected by it." Josie also served as the host for the second Annual Trauma Reunion, From Trauma to Triumph – You’re a Star. "Ninety percent of our patients have blunt trauma, “ says Jeffrey S. Upperman, MD, director of the program. Loren also visits children at the hospital all year round. To learn how you too can help the American Cancer Society, visit their website.
Working nonstop on her hit Disney TV show Wizards of Waverly Place and her new K-Mart clothing line Dream Out Loud isn’t enough for Selena Gomez, who has always felt the desire to give back to those less fortunate. This year, Gomez became the youngest Ambassador ever for UNICEF, which aims to prpvide children in developing nations with water, food, medicine and education. "Every day, 25,000 children die from preventable causes," said Gomez. "I stand with UNICEF in the belief that we can change that number from 25,000 to zero."
So strong is Swizz Beatz' passion to give back that the producer died for charity—well, sort of. Last week, Swizz joined his wife, Alicia Keys and a number of other celebs in dying a digital death in support of World AIDS Day.
Michelle Caruso-Cabrera is an Emmy-winning anchorwoman for CNBC, but this holiday season Cabrera took on another role—goodwill Ambassador. “I’m on the board of the non-profit [organization] called Ballet Hispanico! We give dance scholarships and I raise money for scholarships for children who come from low income families," said Cabrera. To support Ballet Hispanico, go here.
Ricky Martin recently took a break from being an advocate for gay rights to lend his celebrity to another, equally important cause. The singer traveled to Mexico last weekened to perform at a teleton which collects money through radio and television in order to help children with disabilities. Like everything Ricky does, the event was a big success—he helped the charity telethon raise $350,000.