Lots of celebrities are supporting charities this Christmas, helping raise awareness and funds. Here’s a selection, from Emma Thompson supporting ActionAid UK to Alexandra Burke and Save the Children, and Martin Kemp, who along with Emma and Matt Wills, is supporting Social Bite.
Emma Thompson and ActionAid
Emma Thompson is supporting ActionAid’s Christmas appeal. In a video, the charity’s ambassador asks people to support it by donating to the appeal which is raising funds to keep its shelters for women affected by domestic violence open.
Alexandra Burke and Save the Children
Alexandra Burke was recently photographed wearing a personalised second-hand sweatshirt to celebrate Save the Children’s annual Christmas Jumper Day campaign, which took place on Thursday 8 December. The singer and actress posed in a red upcycled ‘Elf in the Room’ jumper, adorned with festive decorations, in a nod to her ‘elephant in the room’ meme. As part of Save the Children’s efforts to make this year’s Christmas Jumper Day the most sustainable yet, Burke launched a vintage jumper and upcycling store at Westfield London. The ‘Jazz Your Jumper’ store is helping shoppers with professional upcyclers on hand to adorn visitors’ threads with a wide variety of bespoke Christmas designs using heat transfer technology. Anyone without a jumper of their own can choose from hundreds of pre-loved designer options available in the store, donated by Thrift +.
Tim Bilton and Weston Park Cancer Charity
Weston Park Cancer Charity has officially named celebrity chef, Tim Bilton, who has appeared in Great British Menu and This Week on the Farm, as its newest patron. Bilton, who is living with stage four cancer, was first diagnosed with a rare type of melanoma in 2013 after his wife Adele spotted an unusual shadow in his eye. At the time, the chef was preparing to open his second restaurant and aiming for a Michelin star. He has now been through multiple surgeries and rounds of chemotherapy, radiotherapy and immunotherapy at Weston Park Cancer Centre. He is calling on supporters of the charity to back this year’s Christmas Star appeal – which will raise funds for research and services for people in the region.
Trickster supports food banks across the UK
The anonymous vocalist behind a Christmas single in the running for Xmas No.1 (Thank F*ck It’s Christmas) has been delivering to food banks across the UK. Trickster and his supporters has delivered thousands of pounds worth of food to 10 major food banks across London, as well as donations to 14 food banks nationally following conversations with Trussell Trust about the increasing need. Thursday 15 December saw Trickster and his supporters donate 2000kg of food to banks across London and £10,000 in cash donations to further banks across the UK. Setting a record for the biggest ever single donation at the Lambeth food bank, they delivered 715kg in just one day.
Nile Rogers & Chic and Nordoff Robbins
Nile Rodgers and Chic led Nordoff Robbins’s annual Christmas carol service this year, replacing The Who as headline performers. Bon Jovi’s Richie Sambora rocked the church with his performance while actor Josette Simon OBE read at the service. The magical evening of traditional Christmas carols, superstar performances and festive readings from a host of celebrities took place at 7pm on Tuesday 13 December in St Luke’s Church, Chelsea. Money raised will help Nordoff Robbins’ music therapists to support those who need it most to experience the power of music therapy.
Janette & Aljaz and GOSH Charity
Strictly Come Dancing professionals Janette and Aljaz officially launched GOSH Charity’s Christmas Appeal alongside GOSH patient Leah, who earlier this year was diagnosed with a rare type of cancer. The Christmas Appeal encourages the public to make a donation and send messages of hope and support to seriously ill children and their families at Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH) this Christmas. Leah is a keen dancer herself and joined the Strictly stars to unveil a Christmas Appeal Display which features a chimney for Father Christmas’s arrival, a Christmas tree and a postbox for staff and families at GOSH to post their own messages on paper stockings.
Martin Kemp and Social Bite
Backed by stars Martin Kemp, Emma and Matt Willis, Social Bite launched its Festival of Kindness in the run up to Christmas, and has been urging people in Aberdeen to spread some festive goodwill and kindness during these difficult times. The charity is asking people in Aberdeen to donate a ‘Christmas of Kindness’ for £28, which includes a meal, gift, pack of essential items, and emergency accommodation with support for people who are homeless. Through the campaign,Social Bite has set a target of providing 300,000 meals, gifts, and essential winter items. Working alongside local partners, Social Bite has installed 28ft tall Christmas trees in five cities in the UK – London, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Aberdeen, and Dundee, with people living nearby encouraged to buy an extra gift and bring it to the Tree of Kindness to be distributed to people who are homeless in time for Christmas. The charity has created a Wishlist of the items and gifts that homeless and vulnerable people need the most especially at this time of year.