People Staff
September 23, 2008 03:25 PM

Nicole Richie and Joel Madden are turning text messages into serious money for kids in need.

A week after they launched their Text CHILD to 90999 campaign, the Richie-Madden Children s Foundation has raised close to $10,000 toward their goal of $35,000 to build a playground for the children at Beyond Shelter in Los Angeles.

The funds came in via 1,825 text messages, each donating $5, from donations in 48 states.

Richie also made a video while visiting kids and their families at Beyond Shelter to give people a glimpse of those in need of help. “This past year, philanthropy has opened my eyes to so much need and so much beauty,” she writes on “I have also realized how easy it is to help, and how rewarding it feels to be able to make a positive difference in someone s life.”

Madden, who has pledged to join the kids on the playground once it’s built, had something else to celebrate this week: Richie’s 27th birthday on Sept. 21. The Good Charlotte rocker surprised his girlfriend with a celebration at the Beverly Hills Hotel Saturday.
Lisa Ingrassia

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