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  • Point Foundation (Point) is the nation's largest scholarship-granting organization for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) students of merit. Point provides financial support, leadership training, mentoring and hope to LGBT individuals who are marginalized because of their sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression. Point provides its scholars with the financial ability to attend the nation's foremost higher educational institutions and its donors and mentors with the rare satisfaction of directly investing their resources and time in future generations of leaders.

    How you can help

    For more information about Point Foundation, please visit PointFoundation.org. Point Foundation is a 501 (3) organization.

    Celebrity supporters

    Point Foundation has 36 known supporters, including Kristin Chenoweth, David Foster, and Alan Cumming

    Areas of work

    Read more about Point Foundation0s work and celebrity supporters.
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  • Sting

    Sting co-founded The Rainforest Foundation with his wife, Trudie Styler, to help save rainforests in South America. An annual benefit concert is held for the Foundation, and the singer had a species of Colombian tree frog, Dendropsophus stingi, named after him in recognition of his "commitment and efforts to save the rain forest"

    Sting sang on "Do They Know It's Christmas?" – the hit single from "Band Aid" which eventually led to the Live Aid Concert in July 1985, in which Sting also took part.

    He was inspired to start working for humanitarian causes through concerts after seeing the "Secret Policeman's Ball" – Amnesty International0s famous benefit concert – in 1979. Following this, he took part in the Secret Policeman's Other Ball in 1981.

    Charities & foundations supported

    Sting has supported the following charities:

    Read more about Sting0s charity work and events.
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  • ‘Stranger Things' star David Harbour and ‘Fantastic Beasts' star Alison Sudol are on board a Greenpeace ship heading for Antarctic waters.

    They will help make the case for an Antarctic Ocean Sanctuary backed by campaigners, scientists, over 40 international celebrities and 800,000 people around the world.

    Following a Twitter challenge, resulting in more than 200,000 retweets in five hours, David Harbour secured a place on the Greenpeace ship alongside singer-songwriter and actress Alison Sudol. They have joined an expedition to gather scientific evidence of the need for an Antarctic Ocean Sanctuary to safeguard species like whales and penguins.

    More than 40 international celebrities have joined David and Alison as ambassadors for the ‘Protect the Antarctic' campaign. From countries ranging from Argentina to China, Spain to Israel, the ambassadors include actors, presenters, explorers, musicians, chefs and fashion designers:

    Gillian Anderson, Carlos Bardem, Javier Bardem, Sir Quentin Blake, Tanya Burr, Jim Chapman, Gwendoline Christie, Lily Cole, Fearne Cotton, Dame Judi Dench, Tracey Emin, Lena Endre, Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, Ralph Fiennes, Sir Ranulph Fiennes, Ben Fogle, Stephen Fry, Roie Galitz, David Gandy, Terry Gilliam, Philip Hoare, Vanessa Kirby, Annie Lennox, Alvaro Longoria, Joanna Lumley, Les Luthiers, Dame Helen Mirren, Thandie Newton, Simon O'Brien, Chris Packham, Simon Pegg, Vanessa Redgrave, David de Rothschild, Jack Rowan, Sir Mark Rylance, Alexander Skarsgård, Alison Steadman, Michaela Strachan, Laura Wells, Vivienne Westwood, and Wang Yuheng.

    David Harbour, who plays Police Chief Jim Hopper in ‘Stranger Things', and is on board the Greenpeace ship Arctic Sunrise, said:

    "Well, Greenpeace says the Weddell Sea and its surroundings are home to a precious ecosystem, vital to sustaining our future. And that there's penguins there. And that I'll get to waddle around with them, discuss their parenting techniques with them and yes, yes, dance with them. And that they'll film it. And that if maybe I get enough support from everybody, they'll gimme that video, so I can rent it out to you (be kind, rewind please).

    "Those who think I don't have the sea legs to cross the Drake Passage, nor the cojones to scare away a rogue fur seal in my way, nor the animal magnetism to attract a group of curious penguins… Look it's not the smart money bet… I mean, I've been known to do stranger things (insert canned laughter here)."

    Alison Sudol, who plays Queenie Goldstein in ‘Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them', and is on board the Greenpeace ship Arctic Sunrise, said:

    "There is a massive movement to protect these waters, which provide invaluable refuge to marine wildlife, and I am thrilled to join Greenpeace as an Antarctic Ambassador! Not only do I get to shout about it everywhere I can, but I also get to put on my life jacket and long johns and go exploring."

    Wang Yuheng, a nature lover and reality TV star famous for superhuman observation and memory, and who will be joining the expedition in February, said:

    "If the world is an ink painting, Antarctica is the pristine white space that gives it depth. We must protect it, its oceans and its wildlife."

    Javier Bardem, Oscar-winning actor who joined Greenpeace's Antarctic expedition in January, said:

    "The benefits of an Antarctic Ocean Sanctuary would be global. Healthy oceans sustain precious wildlife and help limit climate change."

    Stephen Fry said: "Every year blue whales, the largest animal that has ever lived, migrate thousands of miles to feed in the seas of the Antarctic. Last century we almost hunted these gentle giants to extinction: now we need to get serious about giving them proper protection to recover and flourish by establishing an Antarctic Ocean Sanctuary."

    Dame Judi Dench said: "From plastic pollution to overfishing and climate change, our oceans are under threat. Here on land we can all take action to help, by not using throwaway plastic like bags, straws and bottles. But if our seas are going to recover, scientists are telling us we need to create sanctuaries covering at least 30% of the planet's oceans. Sanctuaries encourage vital biodiversity, provide food security for the billions of people that rely on our oceans, and are essential to tackling climate change. We need to protect the world's oceans and it starts right now in the Antarctic!"

    Dame Helen Mirren said: "The Antarctic is a special place, home to so many extraordinary animals, and it needs to be protected from the damage caused by humans to so much of the rest of the planet. I'm delighted to be an Ambassador for an Antarctic Ocean Sanctuary."

    Sir Ranulph Fiennes said: "I was the first person, with Charles Burton, to surface travel to both the South and North poles, and, with Dr Mike Stroud, I was the first to cross the Antarctic Continent entirely on foot. The Antarctic is a place of exploration, wonder and wilderness. Let's keep it that way, by creating an Antarctic Ocean Sanctuary."

    Gillian Anderson said: "Sadly we have been all too quick to exploit our global oceans, and all too slow to protect them. Despite scientists agreeing we urgently need massive ocean sanctuaries to protect marine life, progress is glacially slow. That's why I'm getting behind Greenpeace's campaign to create a huge Antarctic Ocean Sanctuary."

    Sir Quentin Blake said: "Home to colossal squid, giant sea spiders and enormous blue whales, protecting the Antarctic Ocean is a big job – and that's why I'm glad to add my voice to the massive movement to protect it."

    Joanna Lumley said: "The Antarctic has been over hunted and overfished; now it is facing the terrible impacts of global climate change. It's high time we stop exploiting and start protecting."

    Alison Steadman said: "Protecting this vital, life-giving ocean is the only way to look after all of the precious animals that call the Antarctic home. They can't exist without the southern ocean – and frankly, neither can the rest of us!"

    David de Rothschild said: "Wherever you look around the planet our human habits are now undeniably responsible for the devastating impacts and pressures facing nature. The penguins, whales and seals are already facing immense pressures from climate change, pollution and overfishing and if that wasn't bad enough we've added yet another layer of destruction and stress to their habitats. Left unmonitored and to their own devices fishing vessels are sucking up krill for the sake of profit over planet, leaving the marine life to fight for what's left! This route leads to one result – the collapse of an invaluable ecological system. That's why we must support an Antarctic Ocean Sanctuary that would not only protect wildlife, but would help to keep our oceans healthy which can only be a good thing for everyone! It's time to stop the war on nature!"

    Terry Gilliam said: "This Antarctic Ocean Sanctuary would be the largest place on earth set aside for wildlife to live in peace: an area five times the size of Germany, or the equivalent of 200 Yellowstone National Parks. That's something worth being an Ambassador for."

    Lily Cole said: "There is no government for the Antarctic and so no one truly speaking out on its behalf. I am proud to support Greenpeace's dedication to making the Antarctic the biggest protected area in the planet."

    Alexander Skarsgård said: "Greenpeace are going to the end of the earth and the bottom of the sea to protect our planet. Let's stand with them to call for an Antarctic Ocean Sanctuary."

    Ben Fogle said: "Blue Whales can live for up to 100 years, so many lived through decades of whaling that decimated their species. We need to make sure that they also live to see their Antarctic home protected."

    Chris Packham said: "When you think of the Antarctic you probably think of snow, penguins, whales and drifting icebergs. You probably don't think of fishing vessels hoovering up the essential food source these incredible animals depend on: krill. But that is sadly what is happening right now: vast ships sucking tonnes of these tiny crustaceans out of the ocean, sometimes even under the gaze of nearby penguin colonies. We need to create a protected space for Antarctic wildlife free from human exploitation. Penguins have lived in these waters for millions of years. We must let them have an Antarctic Ocean Sanctuary."

    Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall said: "I've had the amazing opportunity to visit the Antarctic Peninsula and South Georgia, where I experienced sights, sounds and smells that I will remember as long as I live. Everything there, from penguins, seals and whales, to krill, jellyfish and plankton, depends on a healthy Antarctic ocean. This is one part of our blue planet we can take immediate action to protect. So let's do it."

    Jack Rowan said: "I'm extremely proud to become an ambassador for Greenpeace's incredible efforts around the world, and particularly the protected ocean sanctuary they're looking to create in the Antarctic. We've all seen the devastation created by human pollution in oceans around the world, and we need to come together to help protect these as yet untouched parts of our planet. I for one will do anything I can to help retain these natural habitats for the animals that live and thrive there."

    From: http://www.looktothestars.org/news/17592-stranger-things-david-harbour-and-fantastic-beasts-alison-sudol-join-greenpeace-ship-headed-to-antarctica

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  • Today, global nonprofit WCG Cares (WCG), in collaboration with actress and activist Jessica Biel, announced the launch of the Tryst Network, a new mission-driven effort to improve the sexual health IQ of women and their partners using funny, provocative and empowering online content.

    The sex positive resource will encourage open conversation and provide accurate and relevant information about sex, relationships and bodies.

    "Within the current cultural climate, the need for a resource like the Tryst Network is now more timely than ever. Knowledge equals choice and choice equals empowerment," said Jessica Biel. "The word TRYST means ‘a meeting place between lovers' and that's what we hope to create—a safe and supported meeting place for our community to get information and work toward increasing their own sexual IQ."

    Throughout the month of February, WCG will be releasing a three-part video series starring Jessica Biel that will address the topics of sexual anatomy, self-exploration, and sexual pleasure. The first video of the series, which was released today, features Jessica joined by Chelsea Handler. The video uses a humorous approach to reach and engage the audience and communicates the importance of knowing and accepting your own body.

    "Through the Tryst Network, we're working to combat the negative, conflicting, fear-based narratives about sex, gender stereotypes, and our bodies that are part of our social norms," said Shannon Bledsoe, WCG Executive Director. "Our hope is that through our willingness to be wide open and a bit provocative, Tryst can help disrupt the notion that these topics are shameful or too embarrassing to talk about."

    For more information about Tryst Network go to www.trystnetwork.org.

    From: http://www.looktothestars.org/news/17589-jessica-biel-and-wcg-partner-on-the-tryst-network

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  • Written by Jennifer Conroy

    What were you doing during the Super Bowl this year? Perhaps you burned your finger while pealing out the frozen pizzas from your oven, or maybe you were dressed up in your team's gear drinking a Bud light waiting for the show to start.

    Actually, you may have been in traffic with a platter of seven layer bean dip on your lap waiting to be consumed by a bunch of beer guzzlers who only wanted to see their favorite team win one of their most anticipated days of the year. There are other important moments in life while as a country we share the similar interests during one of the nation's most celebrated sports moments other than hot dogs, chips, dip, sports clad, and performer of the halftime show. Herein we want to celebrate four "do good moments" of Super Bowl LII. These moments need no trophy or victory, other than a smile and a nod at recognition that as a nation we should be doing these sorts of acts daily.

    1. The Minnesota Super Bowl Host Committee
    The Legacy Fund and Target awarded $300,000 to People's Center Clinics and Services, a nationally recognized network of community health clinics. The grant, provided by Target, transformed a gymnasium into a Wellness Hub. This grant is a part of the Super Bowl Legacy Program, which is made possible each year by a $ 1 million contribution courtesy of the NFL Foundation and is complimented by the Super Bowl Committee. Through 52 weeks of giving, the campaign awarded 52 communities with grants that will help improve the health and wellness of young people in Minnesota.

    2. Element Electronics & Gillette Children's Hospital
    CEO of Minnesota based Element Electronics, Mike O'Shaughnessy made this year's Super Bowl extra special for a Philadelphia Eagles fan as he gifted his two premium seats to the 14 year-old kid who was diagnosed with traumatic brain injury when he was just ten months old. Element Electronics partnered up with Gillette Children's Hospital for a social media contest where patients participated in a day-long contest on Facebook by posting a photo or video of themselves being bold on Gillette's Facebook page. To be eligible, contestants had to be an active Gillette patient who has received at least one treatment or checkup at Gillette within the past year and following the contest, Gillette selected a winner at random. The winner of the contest was Gage, a lifelong Gillette patient. When announced his mother exclaimed, "Oh my gosh, I can't believe Gage won! He is so excited. It is a dream come true for him," said his mother Penny Robinson. "Gage has been a lifelong football fan. It is so cool that it's in our hometown, Minnesota." Element and Gillette both maintain campuses in the Twin Cities and are committed to giving back. "With the excitement of the Big Game as a backdrop one might forget that there are many not able to fully participate in the fun," said Mike O'Shaughnessy. "It is an honor to make this happen for one amazing person and their guest."

    3. The New England Charitable Foundation
    Robert Kraft, Chairman and CEO of the New England Patriots, recorded a brief video for guests at St. Francis House. "There are moments in time when being homeless, an experience which excludes one from fully participating in the events of life, are particularly poignant," said Karen LaFrazia, President and CEO of St. Francis House. "Simply by virtue of being without a home, one has no opportunity to be part of the events that people who have a home are busy celebrating. When you are homeless you are often on the outside looking in. But not this past Sunday. The Saint Francis House fed more than 350 of Boston's poor and homeless guests celebrated the Super Bowl by from charitable donations made by Robert Kraft of the New England Patriots. Over 900 chicken wings, 450 bratwurst sausages, 35 gallons of chili, 50 gallons of fruit punch, and 800 cookies were prepared for the homeless tailgate menu by the St Francis House kitchen staff.

    4. Beer Commercials offer Charitable Efforts
    One of the biggest draws to Super Bowl is watching the commercials, Stella Artois was advocating giving back. The Beer brand ran a commercial featuring Matt Damon recommending people to purchase limited-edition chalices to give years of clean water to those in evolving countries through a partnership with Water.org, which supports safe water and sanitation. The Super Bowl commercial promoted that the Limited-Edition Stella Artois Chalice helps provide 5 years of clean water to someone in the developing world. This year's collection features hand-crafted designs inspired by Mexico, India and the Philippines, created by female artists from each of these countries, $3.13 helps provide 5 years of clean water for 1 person in the developing world. Stella Artois will donate $3.13 to Water.org for every Limited-Edition Stella Artois Chalice sold in the U.S. between 1/1/18 and 12/31/18, up to 300,000 chalices.

    From: http://www.looktothestars.org/news/17593-super-bowl-a-charity-roundup

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  • Edward R. Matthews, CEO of ADAPT Community Network announced its 2018 ADAPT Leadership Awards Gala will take place on Thursday, March 8th at Cipriani 42nd Street in New York City.

    Judy Woodruff, Anchor and Managing Editor of the PBS NewsHour will host the event.

    2018 ADAPT Leadership Award honorees include, Al Roker, Co-host and Weatherman of NBC's Today Show and his wife Deborah Roberts, ABC News Correspondent for 20/20, Nightline, Good Morning America, and ABC World News Tonight with David Muir; The Hausman Family, one of the Founding families of United Cerebral Palsy of NYC; Marissa Shorenstein, President, Northeast, AT&T; and Amy Wright, Founder and CEO of Bitty & Beau's Coffee, and 2017 CNN Hero of the Year.

    2018 Co-Chairs of the gala are: James Hausman and Liz Cohen Hausman; James Kase and Helene Miller; Sabina McCarthy; and Alan Zack.

    Honorary Chair of this year's gala is Lynda Carter, Actress, Singer and Activist. Honorary Co-Chairs are Tamsen Fadal, Eight-time Emmy winning Anchor of PIX 11 News and Mike Woods, Meteorologist and Reporter FOX 5's Good Day New York.

    "We are honored to have such distinguished and deserving honorees for our inaugural ADAPT Leadership Awards," says Edward R. Matthews, CEO of ADAPT Community Network. "The Hausman Family is the founding family of this organization. We are extremely proud to recognize their enormous achievements and contributions over four generations. I am personally grateful for their incredible support and encouragement during my almost 30 years here. Al Roker and Deborah Roberts are not only leaders in the media world but have worked for over two decades to help children and families from all walks of life including children with disabilities and are longtime supporters of ADAPT Community Network. We recognize Marissa Shorenstein for her leadership and important ongoing philanthropic work and for the role AT&T plays in innovative technology for people with disabilities. We are particularly pleased to honor parent, advocate, business leader and role model Amy Wright whose vision and courage as a mother of four children (two with disabilities) is a story of inspiration which has resonated and touched the lives of people around the world."

    Judy Woodruff is the anchor and managing editor of the PBS NewsHour. She is also a past Women Who Care honoree. Woodruff has covered politics and other news for more than four decades at CNN, NBC and PBS. For 12 years, Woodruff served as anchor and senior correspondent for CNN, where her duties included anchoring the weekday program, "Inside Politics." At PBS from 1983 to 1993, she was the chief Washington correspondent for The MacNeil/Lehrer NewsHour. From 1984-1990, she also anchored PBS' award-winning weekly documentary series, "Frontline with Judy Woodruff."

    She is the recent recipient of the Cine Lifetime Achievement award, a Duke Distinguished Alumni award, the Edward R. Murrow Lifetime Achievement Award in Broadcast Journalism/Television, the University of Southern California Walter Cronkite Award for Excellence in Journalism, the Al Neuharth/University of South Dakota Award for Excellence in Journalism and the Gaylord Prize for Excellence in Journalism and Mass Communications from the University of Oklahoma, among others.

    Al Roker is currently the Co-host and Weatherman of NBC's Today Show. As a host and weatherman of NBC's Today Show, along with Savannah Guthrie and Hoda Kotb, Al Roker has the undivided attention of the nation (over 32 million viewers per week) every weekday morning as America prepares for work. Spanning a 35-year plus career and a thirteen-time Emmy winner, Al conducts interviews with celebrities and newsmakers around the world and does a wide variety of segments on every imaginable subject.

    Al is also an accomplished television producer. He is CEO of Al Roker Entertainment, Inc. (ARE); a thriving multimedia company involved in the development and production of network, cable, and home video. ARE produces programming for a diverse clientele including NBC News, MSNBC, Spike TV, Lifetime Television, A&E, The History Channel, E!, Discovery Networks, PBS, TV ONE, Oxygen, The Cartoon Network, The Weather Channel and NBC Television Stations Group.

    As a leader in new media broadcasting, Al recently launched Roker Media (@RKRMedia), a creative consortium combining talent, production, amplification, and brand building for digital and live streaming platforms, leveraging audiences where they live online. Working with the latest media technology, Roker Media produces a new generation of shareable social video content for an on-the-go, mobile-first audience.

    Al is a bestselling author with ten acclaimed books to his credit and just completed his first book for kids, "Al Roker's Extreme Weather: Tornadoes, Typhoons, and Other Weather Phenomena" -- released in August from Harper Collins. His mystery novel, "The Midnight Show Murders" is now being made into a TV movie for the Hallmark Channel, starring Holly Peete Robinson, coming 2018.

    Deborah Roberts is an award winning ABC News Correspondent for 20/20, Nightline, Good Morning America, and ABC World News Tonight with David Muir. A media veteran, Roberts is a highly respected journalist who has traveled the world in her reporting. She has also served as substitute anchor for Good Morning America, World News Weekend and 20/20, as well as a co-host on The View.

    Roberts' long form reports on 20/20 have consistently produced extraordinary narratives such as an intimate profile of first lady Michelle Obama, first daughter Ivanka Trump and an in depth investigation into abuse within the Amish community. She has reported from Africa on children orphaned by the HIV/AIDS crisis and was part of the historic coverage of the inauguration of President Barack Obama.

    Roberts has been awarded multiple Emmy awards for her international and national coverage of world events, including her poignant reporting on an Ethiopian American woman's emotional journey back to her African village to discover her long lost mother.

    Roberts is author of "Been There, Done That: Family Wisdom For Modern Times," a book written with her husband, Al Roker. She makes her home in Manhattan with her husband and two children.

    From: http://www.looktothestars.org/news/17591-inaugural-adapt-leadership-awards-gala-to-honor-al-roker-and-deborah-roberts

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  • The National Basketball Association (NBA) announced today that Team LeBron has selected After-School All-Stars Los Angeles and Team Stephen has selected Brotherhood Crusade, as the community-based organizations they will play for during the 67th NBA All-Star Game on Sunday, Feb. 18 (8 p.m. ET) at Staples Center.

    As previously announced, the winning team will donate $350,000 and the losing team will donate $150,000 to their selected organization. Team captains LeBron James and Stephen Curry revealed their team's selected community-based organization in videos shared on social media this morning.

    After-School All-Stars Los Angeles provides comprehensive out-of-school programming for more than 8,000 students in need across 52 schools while Brotherhood Crusade works to empower and support underserved youth in South Los Angeles through mentoring, education, health and wellness and leadership programs.

    From: http://www.looktothestars.org/news/17594-team-lebron-team-stephen-announce-charities-for-67th-nba-all-star-game

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  • No Longer Bound, a residential regeneration center for men with drug and alcohol addiction, is leveraging the power of social media in hopes of raising money for new vans.

    Jeff Foxworthy Takes a Slow Ride to Help Non-Profit Raise Money for New Vans
    Jeff Foxworthy Takes a Slow Ride to Help Non-Profit Raise Money for New Vans

    The non-profit has just released a Carpool Karaoke style video, featuring comedian Jeff Foxworthy and NLB's Executive Director Edward Bailey. The two take a ride in one of the NLB vans and play air guitar to the van's theme song (Slow Ride by Foghat), before shifting to a more serious discussion on addiction and NLB's model of regeneration and recovery.

    The 40 men currently at No Longer Bound are in the fight of their lives from drug and alcohol addiction," said Bailey. "We've worked hard to deliver a world-class regeneration program and most everything is exceptional--except these vans. We are hoping that with the help of the community, we can raise enough money to finally be able to replace the vans and provide our residents with better transportation."

    Foxworthy, best known for his "You Might Be a Redneck if…" brand of humor is also a champion of the broken and fallen man. In addition to Foxworthy's support of NLB, he also leads a weekly Bible study for homeless men at The Atlanta Mission.

    NLB's goal is to purchase three used passenger vans at an estimated cost of $33,500 per vehicle or $100,000 for three new passenger vans. A YouCaring crowdfunding account has been set up for this purpose.

    To donate: nolongerbound.com/vans

    From: http://www.looktothestars.org/news/17585-jeff-foxworthy-takes-slow-ride-to-help-non-profit-raise-money-for-new-vans

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  • The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), the country's foremost civil rights organization, extends their deep gratitude to Rosario Dawson for her support and promotion of their Solar Equity Initiative and Go Solar in Your Community pledge.

    Dawson – a prolific producer, actress, singer, and political activist for women's rights and environmental justice, recorded a video to stand in her place at NAACP's Image Awards on January 15, 2018. An NAACP Image Award winner, Dawson recorded Live from the Art, Culture and Social Action festival, Into Action, where she made the connection between the degradation of the environment and communities and populations who are hit first and worst by the extractive energy economy, namely communities of color and indigenous communities, low-income communities, women, formerly-incarcerated persons, and other groups.

    * Studies show that 71% of African Americans live in counties in violation of federal air pollution standards as compared to 56% of the overall population.
    * More than 1.78 million, or 3 percent of Latinos, live in areas where toxic air pollution from oil and gas facilities is so high that the cancer risk due to this industry alone exceeds EPA's level of concern.
    * Nearly 70% of African Americans live within 30 miles of a coal-fired power plant, which in 2016 generated 30% of the United State's electricity. The health conditions associated with exposure to toxins emitted from these plants disproportionately impact African Americans.
    * Low income populations on average spend a significantly higher fraction of expenditures on energy purchases than the middle-class and the wealthy: 13% of expenditures in the lowest income groups as opposed to just 5% of household income in the highest income groups.
    * The asthma rate for Puerto Rican children is 23.5 percent, a rate that is more than 3 times higher than for non-Hispanic whites.
    * The Solar Foundation's 2017 U.S. Solar Industry Diversity Study found that racial diversity within the solar energy industry has remained relatively stagnant over recent years and that all people of color are at risk of being left behind as the solar workforce continues to grow. In 2016, only 6.6 percent of U.S. solar workers were African-American. According to the 2016 census, African-Americans make up 13.3 percent of the U.S. population. As such, even while we must promote clean and renewable energy over fossil fuel energy sources , it is necessary to address the obstacles to access and diversity in the renewable energy sector.

    "All of these social justice issues are interconnected, driven by profiteering in a culture of dominating groups and individuals amassing wealth, power, and control at the expense of women, communties of color, low-income communities, and the environment," explains Dawson. She also highlights the NAACP's Environmental and Climate Justice Program's year-long Solar Equity Initiative, which will provide solar job skills training to 100 individuals, install solar panels on 20 households and 10 community centers, and strengthen equity in solar access policies in at least 5 states across the country.

    Dawson opened a challenge to everyone to take the pledge and join the solar movement: "By going solar, we support communities of color to join and lead the solar revolution. I'm calling on all of you to do the same and to be a part of advancing the movement to take back our power -- figuratively and literally. So I challenge you to join me. Join me in advancing the solar revolution by going to www.naacp.org."

    The NAACP Solar Equity Initiative brings together partners including GRID Alternatives, Solar Energy Industries Association, Sunrun, United Methodist Women, Vote Solar, and others to advance the aims of an multiple civil rights initiatives: Environmental and Climate Justice, Economic Development, Labor, Education, Health and Criminal Justice.

    The reformation of the energy sector into a cleaner, sustainable, and vibrant economy means more than shifting to clean energy sources. They call for equity; local communities must control their energy sources and benefit from local economic growth through stable employment opportunities.

    Take the pledge and learn more here.

    From: http://www.looktothestars.org/news/17590-rosario-dawson-promotes-naacps-solar-equity-initiative

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  • The Rutgers University Board of Governors confirmed that Newark's own Queen Latifah will deliver the keynote address at the Rutgers University − Newark Commencement Ceremony on May 14, 2018 at the Prudential Center.

    Selected for this honor by a committee of students, faculty, and staff, the hip-hop icon, award-winning actress, singer/song-writer, producer, entrepreneur, and humanitarian will also receive an honorary Doctor of Fine Arts degree. "Queen Latifah is inspiring to us as students because she always projects herself through her work as a strong woman," said RU-N undergraduate Adebimpe Elegbeyele, who served on the commencement selection committee. "She shows young women that we can do that too and young men that they need to respect that."

    An Award-winning Entertainer and Trailblazer

    Born in Newark and raised in East Orange, New Jersey, Queen Latifah has earned a Grammy, Primetime Emmy, Golden Globe, three Screen Actors Guild Awards, three NAACP Image Awards, two BET Awards, two Teen Choice Awards, and numerous other accolades of national and international distinction. At the age of 21, she organized and became CEO of Flavor Unit Records and Management Company based in Jersey City, New Jersey. By 1993, the label had 17 signed artists. In 1995, her label won its first Grammy for a song she composed, "U.N.I.T.Y.," which became an anthem rallying young women to self-love and mutual support, demonstrating the ways in which Queen Latifah leverages her talent to pursue the proverbial "double bottom line" of doing well and doing good by drawing attention to issues of social importance. More recently, she co-starred in the acclaimed comedy "Girls Trip," which was chosen by Time magazine as one of its top 10 films of 2017.

    A Humanitarian and Philanthropist Who Never Forgot Her Newark Roots

    Queen Latifah founded a scholarship foundation for low-income youth and has worked to mitigate home foreclosures in disadvantaged neighborhoods. These were just some of the reasons why she received Newark Beth Israel Medical Center's Community Award in 2013. Queen Latifah also has been an effective advocate for international initiatives such as ‘Let Girls Learn,' the campaign started by former First Lady Michelle Obama, that strives to provide support to 62 million girls around the world who do not have access to education. She is currently the spokesperson for the American Heart Association's ‘Rise Above Heart Failure' initiative. Other causes she has supported include the Boys & Girls Clubs of America, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, and Save The Music Foundation.

    "Queen Latifah has been a consistent supporter of Newark and a source of inspiration for creative people and entrepreneurs in our city and throughout the world," said Lyneir Richardson, Executive Director of The Center for Urban Entrepreneurship and Economic Development at Rutgers -- Newark. "She is an inspiring role model of excellence for Rutgers -- Newark. I have seen, up close, her creative spirit, entrepreneurial drive and deep-rooted connection to inclusive urban community revitalization."

    From: http://www.looktothestars.org/news/17595-queen-latifah-to-be-honored-with-honorary-degree

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  • Award winning actor, writer, composer and humanitarian Lin-Manuel Miranda has unveiled a new Salsa-music remix of "Almost Like Praying," his all-star benefit single recorded last Fall to benefit the Hispanic Federation's "Unidos" Disaster Relief Fund, for hurricane recovery and rebuilding initiatives in Puerto Rico.

    "The benefit single ‘Almost Like Praying' has had tremendous success with audiences worldwide," said Lin-Manuel Miranda. "As we now continue to help establish long-term self-sustainable initiatives to rebuild Puerto Rico, we are thrilled to bring this new version to Salsa-music fans. Although it has been over four months since Hurricane Maria hit Puerto Rico, the island still needs much help to get its most basic infrastructure up and running -- including electricity, roads and bridges, healthcare and other vital programs."

    The original "Almost Like Praying" was released for download and streaming on October 6, 2017. Within its first week, it hit number one in digital sales in 17 countries. 100% of the proceeds have gone to the Hispanic Federation's "Unidos" Disaster Relief Fund, which has sponsored hundreds of initiatives to assist in the relief, recovery and now rebuilding of Puerto Rico, a U.S. territory since 1898.

    "Lin-Manuel Miranda fans couldn't be more excited about the release of ‘Almost Like Praying,' and we're incredibly thrilled that LaMusica's App partnership gives our subscribers early access to this long-awaited Salsa-Remix," said Raúl Alarcón, Chairman, President, CEO of SBS. "Together, SBS and LaMusica App are connecting people who are passionate about music with the world's most iconic artists through unique experiences like this -- and there are many more to come."

    "We have a long history of collaborating with Lin-Manuel Miranda in innovative ways over the years," said Jesus Salas, EVP of Programming of SBS & Multiplatform Coordinator. "He's once again proved that he's a true innovator, and we are honored to partner with him on the historic launch of his new Salsa-Remix. Our nationwide world premiere of ‘Almost Like Praying' will reach millions of Lin-Manuel's fans across the country -- while creating millions of new ones."

    Both the original (dancehall beat) and the new Salsa-remix of "Almost Like Praying" are distributed by Atlantic Records.

    The lyrics of "Almost Like Praying" are a rhyming arrangement of all 78 municipalities of Puerto Rico….78 hometowns, 78 communities, 78 sets of individuals who together make up the Puerto Rican culture. The track also samples "Maria" from WEST SIDE STORY in order to reclaim the name of the hurricane which destroyed everything Puerto Ricans know and love on their island.

    To download and streaming "Almost Like Praying," click here.

    For more information about the Hispanic Federation's "Unidos" Hurricane Disaster Relief Fund, click here.

    From: http://www.looktothestars.org/news/17596-lin-manuel-miranda-releases-new-salsa-remix-of-almost-like-praying-to-benefit-hurricane-relief-efforts-in-puerto-rico

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  • As the world comes together for the Winter Olympics, which kicked off Friday in Pyeongchang, Republic of Korea, United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres called on everyone to recognize and promote the Games' universal message of peace and tolerance.

    "The Olympic spirit allows people to be together, from all over the world, to respect each other, to assert the values of tolerance, of mutual understanding that are the basic elements for peace to be possible," Mr. Guterres told journalists in Pyeongchang.

    Obviously, in the present context, he said, there is a lot of attention for this message of peace in relation to the Korean Peninsula, but the Olympic message of peace is not local.

    "It is universal. It's for the world. It is valued in Korea as it is valued everywhere where we struggle to try to address the many complex conflicts that we are facing," he said.

    The UN chief also extended his appreciation and pride to be at the Winter Olympics and highlighted the cooperation between UN and the International Olympic Committee (IOC), as well as the values for which the IOC and its sister organization, the International Paralympic Committee, stand.

    The Winter Olympics opened last week with cultural and artistic performances as well as the customary parade of athletes, which was the delegations from the Democratic People's Republic of Korea and the Republic of Korea under one flag, carried together by a sportsperson from each team.

    From: http://www.looktothestars.org/news/17599-olympic-message-of-peace-is-universal

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  • Multi-Platinum Recording Artist, Award Winning Actress and New York Times Best-Selling Author Vanessa Williams, as well as her daughter, Jillian Hervey of Electro-Soul duo, LION BABE, appeared at Burlington's flagship location in New York City to kick off Burlington's seventh annual partnership with WomenHeart to #KnockOutHeartDisease.

    Vanessa Williams and her daughter, Jillian Hervey
    Vanessa Williams and her daughter, Jillian Hervey
    Credit/Copyright:

    Both women received their free heart health screenings and shared how heart disease has impacted their family. Vanessa is no stranger to heart disease, having lost both grandmothers to the illness. Vanessa's parents made a conscious effort to change their heart health history, and Vanessa has carried on this tradition with Jillian and all her children by cooking healthy foods, staying active, and maintaining yearly check-ups.

    How to Get Involved: From now until March 31st, consumers can get involved by visiting their local Burlington store and donating at check-out. Consumers can also get their free heart health screening at select Burlington stores on February 6 and March 20, visit www.BurlingtonStores.com/HeartHealth for more information and to find a screening event near you.

    From: http://www.looktothestars.org/news/17600-vanessa-williams-and-jillian-hervey-team-up-with-burlington-and-womenheart-to-knockoutheartdisease

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  • On the opening day of Sony Pictures' Peter Rabbit, the SAG-AFTRA Foundation's children's literacy program Storyline Online is launching its newest video featuring Peter Rabbit star Rose Byrne reading the original classic The Tale of Peter Rabbit (storylineonline.net/peter-rabbit), written and illustrated by Beatrix Potter in 1901 and published in 1902.

    Video: The Tale of Peter Rabbit read by Rose Byrne

    The quintessential cautionary tale, The Tale of Peter Rabbit warns children about the grave consequences of misbehaving. When Mrs. Rabbit beseeches her four furry children not to go into Mr. McGregor's garden, the impish Peter naturally takes this as an open invitation to create mischief. He quickly gets in over his head, when he is spotted by farmer McGregor himself.

    Byrne provides a compelling and animated seven-minute read aloud of Potter's British classic alongside the original illustrations creatively lifted from the page. Byrne concludes by sharing, "It's one of my favorite books growing up as a child. Did you know this book is over 100 years old? And I chose it because my mother used to read it to me."

    Rose Byrne is the latest actor to join an expanding cast of Storyline Online readers. Other readers include Viola Davis, Chris Pine, Kevin Costner, Lily Tomlin, Christian Slater, Betty White, Wanda Sykes, Justin Theroux and James Earl Jones. Storyline Online® features beloved performers reading cherished children's books aloud alongside creatively produced, original illustrations. The site streams more than 43 videos available at no cost to children, parents, and educators worldwide, and receives over 6 million views every month.

    "We are so grateful to have Rose Byrne volunteer her time and talent to read for Storyline Online and bring this children's classic to life for our digital library," said Cyd Wilson, Executive Director of the SAG-AFTRA Foundation. "We hope Peter Rabbit audiences will head over to Storyline Online to find out how the original book compares to the movie."

    As with all Storyline Online videos, The Tale of Peter Rabbit comes with a supplemental activity guide aligned with Common Core Standards that strengthens verbal, written and comprehension skills. Aimed at students K-1st grades, these activities encourage students to engage in critical thinking and ponder the themes from the book including animal and human interactions, cause and effect, and gender and social conventions.

    In addition, the award-winning Storyline Online website also has a new app for iPhone and Android. The app features the full digital library of Storyline Online videos, complimentary educational activity guides and more.

    To view The Tale of Peter Rabbit and all of Storyline Online videos, visit storylineonline.net.

    From: http://www.looktothestars.org/news/17601-rose-byrne-reads-the-tale-of-peter-rabbit-for-storyline-online

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  • The Los Angeles Police Memorial Foundation (LAPMF) will hold a special benefit concert on Tuesday March 6 at Avalon Hollywood.

    The evening will begin with a performance by LA-based rock musicians Heaven & Earth. Steven Tyler and the Loving Mary Band will close the evening out.

    "While participating in the Memorial Foundation's Charity Golf Tournament I had the opportunity to get to know families that lost a loved one," says Stuart Smith, Heaven & Earth. He continues "They lost a spouse or a parent over something so stupid as a traffic stop. My heart went out to them. I am very proud to be able to help out the men and women of the LAPD that do this every day for so little and are generally very unappreciated. Steven Tyler also wanted to do more to help," said Smith.

    Proceeds from this event benefit LAPD employees and their immediate family members who have been afflicted by a tragedy including being injured or killed in the line of duty. The Foundation takes care of the widows and orphans of Officers when they may not have any other means. The Foundation helps ensure the children of Officers killed have the funds available to go to college, and helps with medical costs and other life necessities. Since it's inception in 1972, the Los Angeles Police Memorial Foundation has granted over $18 million without any direct taxpayer money.

    For over forty-five years, LAPMF has held star-studded fundraising events with a diversity of celebrities coming together to support LAPD Officers and their families who have experienced unforeseen catastrophic circumstances including illness, injury and death. After the benefit concert, the foundation will continue the tradition with a celebrity golf tournament in June and a celebrity poker tournament in October 2018.

    Celebrities that have supported LAPMF throughout the years include: Jack Nicholson, Jerry West, Wayne Gretzky, Mark Wahlberg, Elton John, Sugar Ray Leonard, Vin Scully, Dennis Quaid, Larry King, Kelsey Grammer, Eddie Van Halen, Samuel L. Jackson, Richard Dreyfuss, Chris O'Donnell, George Lopez, Tommy Lasorda, Oscar de la Hoya, Rihanna, Ray Romano, Betty White, Andy Garcia, Luke Wilson, Gene Simmons, Don Cheadle, Tito Ortiz, Chuck Liddell, Marlon Wayans, Backstreet Boys, Paula Abdul, David Hasselhoff, James Gandolfiini, Dean Martin, Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis Jr., Bob Newhart, Telly Savalas, Johnny Grant, and many more.

    Tickets: LAPMFBenefitConcert.eventbrite.com.

    Further information about the Los Angeles Police Memorial Foundation: 
LAPMF.org or 213.847.4240

    From: http://www.looktothestars.org/news/17597-steven-tyler-to-perform-at-los-angeles-police-memorial-foundation-benefit

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  • Shane0s Inspiration, the global leader in creating inclusive playgrounds and educational programs for children with disabilities, is hosting its 20th Anniversary gala on Saturday, March 10, 2018 at the beautiful Vibiana in Downtown Los Angeles.

    Guests will be grooving all night long with live performances presented by one of America's favorite dancers, Emmy-nominated choreographer Dmitry Chaplin, who will be joined by his friends from "Dancing With The Stars" and "So You Think You Can Dance".

    Celebrating the opening of 70 inclusive playgrounds worldwide, the festivities will recall the retro chic style of the 70s with a "Boogie Wonderland" theme, featuring live musical entertainment performed by The Boogie Knights. Also performing is X-Factor's Emmanuel Kelly, who will receive the Trailblazer Award for overcoming severe obstacles to pursue his dream of becoming the world's first differently-abled pop star.

    This star-studded evening of dance and philanthropy will honor other prominent advocates in the special needs community, including Shane's Inspiration CEO/Co-Founder, Tiffany Harris, who will receive the Visionary Leadership Award for inspiring hundreds of thousands of thoughtful citizens to break down the barriers of bias and exclusion for children with disabilities.

    Additionally, the Community Leadership Award will be presented to The Bill and Dinah Ruch Family Foundation in memory of Rocket Williams for inspiring the creation of "Rocket's Universe," Shane's 66th inclusive playground which opened in 2017 in North Hollywood as a tribute to John "Rocket" Williams, a child who passed away due to a rare childhood disorder.

    VIP guests scheduled to attend include Academy Award-winning actor JK Simmons, David Koechner ("Superior Donuts"), Laura SanGiacomo ("NCIS"), Madison McLaughlin ("Arrow," "Chicago PD"), Micah Fowler ("Speechless"), and Mason Cook ("Speechless"), among many others soon to be announced. Past gala supporters have included Andy Garcia, Sean Hayes, Mena Survari, Pauley Perrette, Kaley Cuoco, Jerry O0Connell, Rebecca Romjin, LA Dodgers' Yasiel Puig, Paula Abdul, Halle Berry, Jamie Lee Curtis, Jill Hennessey, Kathryn Hahn, Dakota Fanning, Ben Vereen, Michael Chiklis and Joe Mantegna, just to name a few.

    "Boogie Wonderland" will feature celebrity red carpet arrivals, cocktail reception, a full-course menu prepared by celebrity chef Neal Fraser of Redbird, live and silent auctions, live entertainment, awards program, dancing, and much more. Funds raised will support the costs associated with Shane's Inspiration's programs that teach compassion and acceptance towards people with disabilities.

    For tickets, sponsorship opportunities and additional information, please click here.

    From: http://www.looktothestars.org/news/17598-shanes-inspiration-to-hold-annual-gala-in-march

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  • Charlize Theron joined House of Mandela Family Foundation co-founder Kweku Mandela in conversation at an event on February 10 in Los Angeles to mark Nelson Mandela's 100th birthday.

    Introduced by Chelsea Handler and moderated by Soledad O0Brien, the event was part of the Geffen Playhouse Unscripted Live series.

    "It's an incredible honor to take part in this event and to have the chance to reflect on what an inspirational hero Nelson Mandela was," says Charlize Theron, founder of the Charlize Theron Africa Outreach Project. "His legacy continues to inspire people from around the world to stand up for what is right, to promote equality and inclusion, and to do so with empathy, compassion, and understanding. His message is as powerful and relevant today as it ever was."

    During the event, the pair talked about equal pay issues, #MeToo, and social justice.

    "2017 was a year of a lot of division and my hope is that 2018 will not only be the year of women, but also be the year of love, where we realize that connection is the solution," said Mandela. "It's something my grandfather talked about a lot, the importance of realizing what we have in common with each other rather than what makes us different."

    To read a full account of the event, click here.

    From: http://www.looktothestars.org/news/17602-charlize-theron-joins-kweku-mandela-in-conversation

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  • GLAAD, the world's largest LGBTQ media advocacy organization, today announced that it will honor multi-platinum, Grammy Award-winning pop icon Britney Spears at the 29th Annual GLAAD Media Awards in Los Angeles at Beverly Hilton on Thursday, April 12, 2018.

    The GLAAD Media Awards honor media for fair, accurate, and inclusive representations of LGBTQ people and issues. The GLAAD Media Awards also fund GLAAD's work to accelerate acceptance of the LGBTQ community. The 29th Annual GLAAD Media Awards are presented by Delta Air Lines, Ketel One Vodka, and Wells Fargo.

    Spears will receive GLAAD's Vanguard Award, which is presented to media professionals who have made a significant difference in promoting equality and acceptance of LGBTQ people. Previous Vanguard Award honorees include Jennifer Lopez, Cher, Kerry Washington, Elizabeth Taylor, Whoopi Goldberg, Antonio Banderas, Drew Barrymore, Janet Jackson, Demi Lovato, Eric McCormack, Josh Hutcherson, and Patricia Arquette.

    Britney Spears is a multi-platinum, Grammy Award-winning pop icon, and one of the most successful and celebrated entertainers in pop history with more than 100 million records sold worldwide. Her cutting-edge pop concert Las Vegas residency, "Britney: Piece of Me," at Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino has been voted "Best Show in Las Vegas." Spears recently announced that the show will tour around the globe. For tickets click here.

    Spears is a longtime ally and supporter of the LGBTQ community. She has consistently stood up for LGBTQ youth on GLAAD's Spirit Day by going purple on social media to speak out against bullying. In 2015, she released a Spirit Day video and promoted participation in the anti-bullying campaign by organizing a meet-and-greet for LGBTQ fans, washing her stage at Planet Hollywood purple, and providing anti-bullying materials to concertgoers. In 2016, she was among over 20 music artists to appear on ["GLAAD's song "Hands,"":https://www.glaad.org/blog/glaad-and-music-superstars-release-single-hands-benefit-victims-and-families-orlando-massacre] released with Interscope Records to remember the 49 lives taken in the Orlando Pulse nightclub shooting. The musical tribute to the victims of Orlando, written by Justin Tranter, Julia Michaels and Blood Pop, benefited Equality Florida, the GLBT Community Center of Central Florida and GLAAD. In 2017, Spears was among 140 leading entertainers including Jennifer Lawrence, Ariana Grande, Laverne Cox, and Whoopi Goldberg to speak out in an open letter against two anti-LGBTQ bills, which targeted transgender youth in Texas and were later defeated. Most recently, Spears sparked global attention when she wore a t-shirt stating ‘We Are All Dreamers' and called on Congress to pass the Dream Act via Instagram.

    Spears also has a legacy of deeply embracing her LGBTQ fans. She wrote a highly publicized letter to a young gay man who considered suicide, but credited her music and lyrics with giving him the courage to come out and be true to himself. She wrote to him: "I was very happy to hear how courageous you've been about being openly gay. I've always been told as long as you know in your heart that's what matters most." After a gay couple who met at the opening of "Britney: Piece of Me" married, she surprised them with a touching video to send congratulations and show her support for marriage equality. Most recently, for LGBTQ Pride Month in 2017, Spears penned a heartwarming love letter to the LGBTQ community on Billboard Pride in which she shared that the community's unwavering loyalty and acceptance uplift and inspire her. "I have a secret to share with you. You see it's actually you that lifts me up. The unwavering loyalty. The lack of judgment. The unapologetic truth. Acceptance! Your stories are what inspire me, bring me joy, and make me and my sons strive to be better people."

    "An irrefutable icon, Britney Spears has entertained the world while also embodying the spirit of GLAAD's Vanguard Award by speaking out on significant issues that face her fans -- from the Dream Act to anti-transgender bills in Texas," said Sarah Kate Ellis, President and CEO of GLAAD. "She is a force in the music world who has used her global platform to share messages of love and acceptance, something that the world needs today more than ever."

    In January, GLAAD announced 125 nominees in 21 English-language categories and 16 Spanish-language nominees in 4 categories. The nominees for the 29th Annual GLAAD Media Awards were announced during the Sundance Film Festival by actors Wilson Cruz ("13 Reasons Why," "Star Trek: Discovery") and Trace Lysette ("Transparent"). Nominees across entertainment and news media included This Is Us, Call Me by Your Name, Lady Bird, Battle of the Sexes, A Fantastic Woman, Billions, The Voice, Will & Grace, Andi Mack, Halsey, Kesha, Kehlani, Teen Vogue, The Daily Show with Trevor Noah, NBC Nightly News, HuffPost, and CNN en Español. GLAAD announced a Special Recognition Award for Jay-Z's song and music video "Smile" featuring his mother Gloria Carter who used the song to come out as a lesbian as well as a Special Recognition Award to the animated short film In A Heartbeat.

    Additional special guests and honorees from the GLAAD Media Awards in Los Angeles will be announced in the coming weeks.

    From: http://www.looktothestars.org/news/17608-britney-spears-to-be-honored-at-the-29th-annual-glaad-media-awards

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  • Taraji P. Henson, Sienna Miller, Queen Latifah, Heidi Klum, Adrien Brody, Halsey, Rachel Brosnahan, Sara Sampaio, Hailey Baldwin, and Kenneth Cole were among those gathered at the 20th annual amfAR Gala New York at Cipriani Wall Street to pay tribute to writer, producer, and director Lee Daniels and W Magazine's Editor-in-Chief Stefano Tonchi for their longstanding commitment to the fight against AIDS.

    The event raised $1.6 million for amfAR's life-saving AIDS research programs.

    Other guests included Alexander Vreeland, Lisa Immordino Vreeland, Caroline Vreeland, Leelee Sobieski, Serayah, Olivia Culpo, Joan Smalls, Lais Ribeiro, Alexandra Daddario, Odeya Rush, Coco Rocha, Karen Elson, Georgia Fowler, Nina Agdal, Sofia Resing, Alina Baikova, Ashley Graham, Justine Skye, Nicola Peltz, Anwar Hadid, Lucy Hale, Devon Windsor, Hailey Clauson, Sailor Brinkley Cook, Martha Hunt, Andreja Pejic, Blanca Padilla, Sistine Stallone, Gala Gonzalez, Valery Kaufman, Helena Borden, Jessica Hart, Paige Reifler, Sanne Vloet, LaLa Anthony, Grace Elizabeth, Jackie Cruz, Tobias Sorensen, Adam Kenworthy, Chase Hill, Tyler Clinton, Jonas Tahlin, Chris Salgardo, Susanne Hatje, and more.

    Golden Globe winning and Academy Award nominated actress and event host Taraji P. Henson opened the evening, welcoming guests and thanking the fashion community for their continued support of amfAR. She incentivized the audience to get involved in the fight for a cure, reminding them that there are still 37 million people living with HIV worldwide. amfAR CEO Kevin Robert Frost took the stage to celebrate the life of amfAR Founding Chairman Dr. Mathilde Krim, who passed away on January 15, recognizing that, "there is joy to be found in knowing that so many millions of people literally owe their lives to this great woman." A moving video tribute, including a message from former President Bill Clinton, demonstrated Dr. Krim's lifelong dedication to human rights and the fight against AIDS. Kenneth Cole also took the stage and spoke of his admiration for Dr. Krim, his work with her, and the legacy she left behind for amfAR.

    Alexander Vreeland and Lisa Immordino Vreeland presented the amfAR Award of Courage to their close friend Stefano Tonchi, noting his ability to take on challenges and to use his unique journalistic voice to raise AIDS awareness. Accepting his award, Tonchi harked back to the time when AIDS-related stigma led many to "repress their real identities," and emphasized Dr. Krim's "battle against superstition, ignorance, and discrimination." He concluded by saying that we must continue to fight for a cure "in the name of all those who fought this fight before us."

    Taraji P. Henson made a Perrier-Jouët toast before introducing award-winning actress, singer, and songwriter Queen Latifah to the stage. Queen Latifah presented Lee Daniels with the amfAR Award of Courage, describing his past work with HIV/AIDS patients. She also shared that as a gifted creative force, he creates "unfailingly human" characters, who are "often striving to rise above difficult circumstances." In his acceptance speech, Lee Daniels spoke about a generation lost to AIDS, and said that the crisis had taken at least 40 of his personal friends. In the fight against AIDS, he said it is important to "step up when it matters."

    The evening's fundraising efforts began with a Givergy pledge drive in which amfAR trustee Aileen Getty generously offered to match every gift donated -- dollar for dollar -- up to $100,000, in loving memory of amfAR's Founding Chairman Dr. Krim. Guests bid generously and enthusiastically and raised an additional $125,000, which exceeded amfAR's goal. Anyone who donated over $500 will receive a copper pineapple gift set, courtesy of Absolut Elyx.

    Some highlights of the live auction, conducted by Alexander Gilkes, included a Harley-Davidson Softail Breakout motorcycle ridden in Kiehl's LifeRide for amfAR, presented by amfAR supporters Heidi Klum and Maxwell; a trip for two to Paris and Epernay, featuring a private tour and tasting at Maison Perrier-Jouët; a luxurious 7-night stay at the One&Only Palmilla in Los Cabos, Mexico; a Lee Daniels on-set experience; an untitled photograph by Cindy Sherman; Alex Prager's photograph, Act I; Katherine Berhardt's painting, Turqouise Miami, Dark Net; a work from LeeLee Kimmel's first solo exhibition; and Andy Kissing John Lennon, a photograph by Christopher Makos.

    Following the auction, three-time Grammy Award winner Maxwell introduced Grammy- nominated singer Halsey, and commended her recent activism at the 2018 Women's March. Halsey's performance of her hit singles "Bad At Love," "Colors," and "Closer" captivated the audience and had them dancing until the end of the night.

    Guests enjoyed glasses of Perrier-Jouët and Absolut Elyx cocktails throughout the event. The event's Signature Sponsors were Bloomingdale's, Delta Air Lines, MP Management, and Perrier-Jouët. Kiehl's Since 1851 and Mandarin Oriental, New York, were the Associate Sponsors. Delta Air Lines is the Official Airline of amfAR.

    The amfAR Gala New York is produced by Andrew Boose/AAB Productions.

    From: http://www.looktothestars.org/news/17604-stars-gather-for-20th-annual-amfar-gala-new-york

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  • The Elders are deeply saddened at the untimely death of Pakistani lawyer and human rights defender Asma Jahangir.

    Asma Jahangir was internationally respected for her pioneering work in her home country and beyond. She worked closely with her sister Hina Jilani, who is a member of The Elders, to set up Pakistan's first ever free legal aid centre and the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan.

    Her commitment to freedom and justice transcended borders and made her a defiant critic of authoritarian regimes who sought to cloak their repression in the guise of cultural traditions.

    Kofi Annan, Chair of The Elders, said: "Asma Jahangir's tenacity, clarity of vision and unbending principles helped win countless victories in the struggle against authoritarianism. She spoke truth to power, and power was forced to listen. In this sad time, I hope her family can take some consolation that Asma's legacy will live on to inspire future generations of lawyers, feminists and human rights activists the world over."

    From: http://www.looktothestars.org/news/17603-the-elders-mourn-the-death-of-asma-jahangir

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  • Just ahead of Lent — when observers are encouraged to eat fish instead of meat on Fridays and Ash Wednesday — Emmy Award winner and vegan actor Beau Bridges stars in a new video for PETA to shine a spotlight on the intelligence, friendliness, and playfulness of octopuses and reveal how these and other aquatic animals are mutilated and killed for human consumption.

    "Sea animals aren't swimming vegetables. They're ‘sea animals,' not ‘seafood,'" says Bridges. "They're smart, social beings who can feel pain. They have more in common with us than most people realize." But he notes that "there are no federal laws protecting aquatic animals from cruelty."

    The actor goes on to reveal how fish undergo excruciating decompression when they're violently hooked and dragged from the ocean's depths, often causing their internal organs to rupture. Those who survive slowly suffocate, are crushed to death, or are cut open and gutted while they're still conscious. Octopuses are served to diners while they're still writhing, lobsters are boiled to death in scalding-hot water, and crabs are torn apart limb from limb in industrial slaughterhouses.

    "Humans have only one heart, compared to an octopus's three, but surely, we can show sea animals compassion by leaving them in the ocean and off our plates," he concludes.

    From: http://www.looktothestars.org/news/17606-beau-bridges-have-a-heart-by-skipping-all-meat-including-fish-during-lent

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  • Kelly Monaco and Billy Miller, from ABC's hit daytime TV show General Hospital #GH, are participating in a Live Event experience in New York City on Saturday, February 24th for their amazing fans.

    The event, titled Killy Live, will allow their passionate fans to experience an on-stage performance, take professional photo ops with Kelly & Billy, as well as receive personalized autographs. This celebrity meet-n-greet is designed to offer an intimate, safe setting for fans to interact with Kelly & Billy, who rarely do live appearances.

    Killy Live will have two (2) shows, a matinee & evening show, at the Gerald Lynch Theater on 59th Street in New York City on Saturday, February 24th. Some ticket categories have been sold out. Remaining ticket prices range from $89 -- $199. Full event details and ticket information are at www.killylive.com. Killy Live is produced by iDEKO Productions & Once In A Lifetime Events.

    "Soap fans are the most loyal in the world. Some have been watching General Hospital for decades," said Patrick Bradley, the event's co-producer at Once in a Lifetime Events. "We are thankful Kelly & Billy have been so proactive with fans, media & the production team in making this event memorable for the fans."

    Killy Live producers are working with Next Gen Face charity for this event -- "The hope is to bring attention to sons & daughters suffering from facial deformities," said Patrick Bradley. Kelly & Billy will be visiting Lenox Hill hospital prior to the event putting smiles children's faces. www.NextGenFace.org

    As Kelly is also a proud winner of the hit primetime show "Dancing with the Stars" and continues to make return guest appearances, DWTS fans are also showing their excitement to come to Killy Live to meet her.

    From: http://www.looktothestars.org/news/17607-fan-event-in-nyc-with-kelly-monaco-and-billy-miller

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  • Lucasfilm has teamed up with Tipping Point to help support the relief efforts in the Napa and Sonoma areas which were devastated by fires earlier this year.

    Rare First Order Stormtrooper helmets worn during the filming of Star Wars: The Force Awakens
    Rare First Order Stormtrooper helmets worn during the filming of Star Wars: The Force Awakens

    The team behind Star Wars: The Force Awakens and the latest chapter in the Skywalker saga, Star Wars: The Last Jedi, are giving fans three chances to bid on truly unique signed memorabilia through IfOnly.

    Star Wars fans will be able to bid on two screen-used First Order stormtrooper helmets worn during the filming of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, and have never been offered to the public until now.

    One of the helmets celebrates the recent release of Star Wars: The Last Jedi and features signatures by screenwriter and director, Rian Johnson, as well as Lucasfilm president and producer Kathleen Kennedy. The second helmet includes autographs from both The Force Awakens director J.J. Abrams and producer Kathleen Kennedy.

    Finally, an extremely limited-edition porg maquette, which is one of only five screen-used examples ever made, features the autographs of Rian Johnson, Kathleen Kennedy, and creature designer Neal Scanlan. With detailed etching and colors, the statuette showcases the doe-eyed creature that populates the sacred Jedi island of Ach-To. This particular porg was used as a film prop to line up shots in The Last Jedi in several locations overseas and in-studio throughout the filmmaking process.

    Proceeds from the sale of each of these one-of-a-kind collectibles will benefit Tipping Point's Emergency Fire Relief Fund, supporting low-income communities affected by the devastating fires in the North Bay.

    "Giving back to the community is one of the most important privileges we have," says Lucasfilm EVP and General Manager, Lynwen Brennan. "This particular tragedy both directly and indirectly affected so many of our employees, so it's a cause that is very near and dear to us. We are delighted to be able to help and offer our support by providing some rare pieces for auction that we hope will draw attention to this extraordinary relief effort from our friends at IfOnly and Tipping Point."

    "We are thrilled and honored to once again work with our friends at Lucasfilm in their efforts to support a worthy cause by featuring these incredible pieces of cinematic history. As a Bay Area company, we are proud to be a part of the efforts to help those most affected by the North Bay fires," said Sean O'Neill, Director of Entertainment at IfOnly.

    The auctions begin on February 9th, with the first offering closing on March 2nd at 3pm EST; they can be found at ifonly.com/Lucasfilm.

    From: http://www.looktothestars.org/news/17605-ifonly-and-lucasfilm-offer-signed-movie-memorabilia-to-support-napa-sonoma-fire-relief

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  • Cristiano Ronaldo is supporting Save the Children's Rohingya humanitarian response by urging people to help refugee children who have fled the violence in Myanmar's northern Rakhine State and are now living in camps and makeshift settlements in Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh.

    "I count my blessings. I have four beautiful children. I would do anything for them. When you become a parent, you understand that all parents must feel the same way. We love our children," said Cristiano Ronaldo, a Save the Children Ambassador. "It is difficult as a father to watch the Rohingya refugee crisis and not feel for these children. They need our care and support."

    Ronaldo has posted to his social media channels a photo of Saif holding his son Shafiq, 1 ½ years old, taken at a Save the Children-supported health clinic in Cox's Bazar. Alongside the photo appeared a photo of Ronaldo with his children. The posts on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter have a combined reach of more than 300 million followers.

    Ronaldo also made a donation to support Save the Children's child-friendly spaces in Cox's Bazar, which offer children a safe place to play, socialize, recover and be children again. At these spaces, children can participate in a variety of games and activities, such as drawing, singing, jumping rope and playing football, as well as receive psychosocial support from skilled facilitators. The international humanitarian organization runs 86 child-friendly spaces in the camps and settlements.

    "The experience of playing as a child is universal. It is a chance to make friends, unwind and have fun," said Ronaldo. "I have strong memories of playing football when I was young, and the joy it brought to my life. I wish for Rohingya children to feel that same joy."

    Around 688,000 Rohingya -- more than half of whom are children -- have arrived in Bangladesh following a military crackdown that occurred after attacks were carried out on Myanmar police border posts in northern Rakhine state last August. Many families arrived in Bangladesh with only the clothes on their backs.

    "We are grateful to Cristiano Ronaldo for making sure Rohingya refugee children are not forgotten," said Mark Pierce, Bangladesh Country Director for Save the Children. "As he knows and understands, no matter where children live in this world, they all love to play. The activities offered in a child-friendly space can strengthen children's resilience and help them begin to process their past suffering and imagine a happier future."

    "The situation for Rohingya children who fled to Bangladesh is alarming. Families live in basic shelters made of bamboo and plastic, and rely on food rations to survive. The monsoon rains are likely to cause major damage when they hit in a couple of months time and there is an ongoing risk of an outbreak of disease.

    "While the government of Bangladesh and host communities have shown extraordinary generosity towards Rohingya refugees, the international community needs to step up funding to make sure Rohingya families are provided with the support they need. We are extremely grateful to Cristiano Ronaldo for the support he is providing for Rohingya children."

    A Save the Children Ambassador since 2013, Ronaldo continually uses his voice and visibility to draw attention to the world's most vulnerable children. In December 2016, the soccer superstar sent a heartfelt video message of hope to Syrian children living under siege in Aleppo. Ronaldo's post and donation comes as Save the Children today released a new report, "The War on Children", which finds 1 in 6 children -- at least 357 million globally -- now live in areas affected by conflict.

    To support Save the Children's Rohingya response, visit: www.savethechildren.org/Cristiano.

    From: http://www.looktothestars.org/news/17613-cristiano-ronaldo-shares-unifying-message-to-urge-world-to-help-rohingya-refugee-children

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  • The Elders called on all political actors in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and the wider international community to take urgent action to address the political and humanitarian crises in the conflict-riven country.

    The DRC is facing one of the worst ever humanitarian crises, with 4.5 million Internally Displaced Persons, 13 million people in need of humanitarian assistance and 9.9 million severely food-insecure, including 2 million children at risk of acute malnutrition. The United Nations classified the DRC as a Level 3 Emergency comparable to Yemen, Syria and Iraq.

    The Elders also expressed their grave concern at the severe violence and human rights abuses across the country and the growing political instability sparked by the refusal of President Joseph Kabila to abide by the two-term limit as set out in the constitution.

    They urged regional and international powers to redouble their efforts to encourage a peaceful transition. The recently-announced electoral calendar should be respected as it provides an opening for reinvigorated international engagement based on the "Saint-Sylvester" accord reached on 31 December 2016.

The Elders also deplored the failure of the international community to adequately fund humanitarian relief efforts, noting that although the UN's Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) launched its biggest-ever funding appeal of $1.68 billion for 2018, only 2 percent has been received so far.

Violence is endemic across the country and the recent upsurge in the Kasai region is of particular concern, with credible reports of a deliberate strategy of terror and destruction by government forces and their auxiliaries against the civilian population. The situation in North and South Kivu and Ituri is much worse than last year, and the capital Kinshasa has also seen growing revolt against the authorities.

    Kofi Annan, Chair of The Elders and former UN Secretary-General, said: "The people of the Democratic Republic of Congo have been consistently ill-served by their leaders for decades while the international community has failed to respond effectively to protect their rights. As President Kabila's legitimacy declines, flashpoints of insecurity have proliferated and the country risks becoming a failed state. The repercussions of this breakdown will be felt across the region and beyond. Urgent action to secure free and fair elections is a crucial first step to restoring political stability."

    Mary Robinson, Elder and former UN Special Envoy to the Great Lakes region, added: "The humanitarian crisis in the Democratic Republic of Congo is intolerable to anyone who believes in human rights and dignity, and the response is woefully inadequate. This failure of political will from national politicians and donors alike should shame us all into demanding concerted action to provide relief and protect rights."

    From: http://www.looktothestars.org/news/17614-the-elders-call-for-urgent-action-on-political-and-humanitarian-crises-in-dr-congo

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  • On February 25, 2018, Women Like Us Foundation will present the documentary Women Like Us, Three Journeys. One Mission. To Change the World.

    Women Like Us, Three Journeys. One Mission. To Change the World
    Women Like Us, Three Journeys. One Mission. To Change the World

    The film, executive produced by Women Like Us co-founder Linda Rendleman, and co-produced by Women Like Us Global Ambassador Catt Sadler, is a rallying cry for women to continue the fight for equality for all.

    Women Like Us is a film that lifts and motivates the spirit. This story follows three women on a moving journey of exploration, adversity and evolution, in addition to witnessing the unimaginable social injustices women face around the globe. Award winning journalist Catt Sadler and her mother, Linda Rendleman, activist/author and cofounder of Women Like Us Foundation, along with Sally Colon, film director, travel the US and Kenya to engage in conversations with astounding women tackling unimaginable social injustices such as female genital mutilation, human trafficking, teen suicide, homelessness and more.

    "I'm thrilled to be coming back to Indy to connect with all the wonderful women who are making change for the community. It was the first place I wanted to come to and share our film. Indy means so much to me and my mom, Linda," commented Catt Sadler.

    The Women Like Us Foundation promotes gender equality and social justice through funding women's nonprofits fighting sexual abuse, mitigating homelessness, and supporting women's leadership through education. Rendleman formed Women Like Us in Indianapolis ten years ago.

    Included in the film are local resident and international artist Nancy Noel who supports the NA Noel school in Kenya and Fishers resident Deb Myers, founder of the One Girl at a Time Foundation.

    "Our work of 10 years has created awareness and funded initiatives led by women with an emphasis on gender equality and social justice," emphasizes Linda Rendleman, the CEO and President of Women Like Us Foundation. "This film allows us to take their stories across the country with a call to action for women to find their passion and speak their voices for change."

    Event sponsors include KAR Auctions, Faegre, Baker, Daniels , LLP, Raymond James Network for Women Advisors, Baritone Sales Group, One Girl at a Time Foundation, Sharonweb Autism Foundation, Network of Women in Business and You Can Free Us.

    The documentary will screen on February 25th at 6:30pm at the Indianapolis IMAX Theatre (650 W. Washington St. Indianapolis, Indiana 46204), preceded by a 5:00pm VIP/Media Red Carpet reception. Catt Sadler and Linda Rendleman will co-host a Q&A at 8:00pm, following the film.

    Tickets are available at IMAX.

    From: http://www.looktothestars.org/news/17609-catt-sadler-co-produces-new-documentary-women-like-us

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  • Jennifer Hudson is to be honored by the Women's Cancer Research Fund.

    On Tuesday, February 27, 2018, the Women's Cancer Research Fund (WCRF) Honorary Chairs Rita Wilson, Tom Hanks, Kate Capshaw and Steven Spielberg, along with WCRF co-founders Anne Douglas, Quinn Ezralow, Marion Laurie, Kelly Chapman Meyer, and Jamie Tisch will welcome guests to An Unforgettable Evening presented by Saks Fifth Avenue. The event will once again take place at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel, and benefit the Women's Cancer Research Fund, a program of the Breast Cancer Research Foundation (BCRF).

    Hosted by Emmy Award-winning host, writer, and producer James Corden, the evening will include a dinner, an awards presentation and musical performance. The Nat King Cole Award will be presented to Grammy and Academy Award-winning recording artist and actor Jennifer Hudson for her ongoing philanthropic work around women's issues. Award winning actress and entrepreneur Sofia Vergara will accept the 2018 Courage Award for her continued support and dedication to raising awareness for cancer research in all its forms.

    GRAMMY-Award winning, multiplatinum international icon, Pitbull, will be bringing the 305 to the Unforgettable Evening stage for a special performance.

    "On behalf of my co-chairs, we are thrilled to honor Sofia and Jennifer, two powerful women who are deeply committed to women's health," said Rita Wilson. "Cancer is one of the most pressing public health issues we face today and the WCRF community is making an incredible impact on advancing breakthroughs and bringing us closer to cure."

    An Unforgettable Evening is the flagship fundraising event for WCRF featuring extraordinary honorees, tributes to cancer survivors and the memory of those impacted by cancer. For over 20 years, this event has brought together leaders in entertainment, cancer research and corporate philanthropy in raising funds for pioneering cancer research conducted at leading medical and academic institutions in Los Angeles and throughout the nation. Previous Unforgettable Evening Honorees have included Natalie Cole, Courteney Cox, Sheryl Crow, Melissa Ethridge, Renette Ezralow, Tom Ford, Carolina Herrera, Faith Hill & Tim McGraw, Sir Elton John, Nicole Kidman, Judy & Leonard Lauder, Gwyneth Paltrow and Stella McCartney.

    Saks Fifth Avenue is proud to support WCRF to present An Unforgettable Evening for the 14th time. Over the last 18 years, Saks has donated nearly $40 million to cancer research and treatment organizations throughout the United States. de GRISOGONO and ALLEVEN will provide additional support for the event.

    Find out more about the event here.

    From: http://www.looktothestars.org/news/17612-jennifer-hudson-and-sofia-vergara-to-be-honored-at-an-unforgettable-evening

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