How Celebs Are Helping Others During the Coronavirus Pandemic
These celebrities are donating time and money to help fund relief efforts amid the global coronavirus pandemic
Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson
The Hobbs & Shaw actor, 48, shared a video on Instagram revealing a gift he sent the Ridgefield Fire Department in New Jersey to show his appreciation. Johnson outfitted the rescue workers with brand-new pairs of his Project Rock Under Armour shoes.
"Glad you (bad asses) got my note - Ridgefield Fire Department ... ✍🏽 😉 A very small way of us saying, THANK YOU to you guys and all our first responders across our country," Johnson wrote on Instagram. "I see you and we’re grateful to you for always taking care of our families and communities."
Ambrosio teamed up with artist Judy Konkoly as well as her supermodel friends Heidi Klum, Lily Aldridge, Miranda Kerr, Barbara Palvin and Irina Shayk for an online auction benefiting Gates Philanthropy Partners' efforts to combat the pandemic. Konkoly created six one-of-a-kind portraits of the models, which are now being auctioned exclusively on LiveAuctioneers through Aug. 29.
“This pandemic has brought devastation to people all around the world, and it is my hope that these one-of-a-kind paintings can raise much-needed funds and contribute in a meaningful way to support those who have been hit the hardest by the spread of COVID-19," Ambrosio said in a statement.
The tennis star announced her goal to "donate 4.25 million masks to underserved schools and provide educational materials about masks to 54 million students and all 115,00 schools in the United States."
"In addition to donating 4.25 million masks, another mask will be donated for each one purchased by the schools. I’m grateful to be able to help educate our schools about this resource, and to be given the opportunity to serve so many students," Williams wrote on Instagram.
Through his Let Love Rule Foundation, the "American Woman" rocker recently launched a food voucher campaign to support the people of the Bahamas — where he lives part-time on the rural island of Eleuthera.
"It is an honor and responsibility for me to care for the beautiful people of The Bahamas," Kravitz told PEOPLE on June 25. "From the dental and medical clinics we do each year, to now this with the food vouchers, I am always looking at finding new ways to support the people who live here in any way I can."
The "Work" singer announced on June 18 that her Clara Lionel Foundation has once again partnered with Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey's #StartSmall initiative to pledge more than $15 million to "organizations focused on addressing mental health issues, food insecurity, income loss and the needs of individuals excluded from federal stimulus programs in Newark and Chicago."
"CLF is supporting on-the-ground partners working on the frontlines of disaster response especially those focused on protecting and serving marginalized communities – helping the most vulnerable in the United States, the Caribbean and in Africa prepare for what is to come," the foundation said in a statement.
"Never has it been more important or urgent to protect and prepare marginalized and underserved communities–those who will be hit hardest by this pandemic," added Justine Lucas, Executive Director of the Clara Lionel Foundation.
The contribution will benefit Direct Relief, Partners In Health, Feeding America the International Rescue Committee and World Health Organization’s COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund, among others.
Matthew & Camila McConaughey
The actor and his wife Camila Alves McConaughey donated masks to frontline workers around his home state of Texas.
"Thanks to @lincoln for donating 110 thousand masks – me and @camilamcconaughey hitting the road to get em to rural hospitals in need across Texas," McConaughey shared on Instagram.
Earlier in the pandemic, the pair donated masks to a hospital in Austin, and have been helping around the Lone Star State since.
Katherine Waterston & Jude Law
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them star Katherine Waterston recently launched a new initiative in the UK called Spare Hand, which works to connect community organizations with volunteers. The platform is perfect for those with unpredictable schedules who might find themselves with free time on short notice, and are seeking to find a way to help. The organization is currently helping to deliver meals and assist other charities helping fight the COVID-19 pandemic. This week saw Jude Law and Waterston herself stop by to lend a hand.
The Crown's Vanessa Kirby also showed support for Waterston's new venture, joining her for a day of volunteering with Spare Hand's meal deliveries as well.
The Santa Clarita Diet star is partnering with McCormick Spice to donate $1 million to No Kid Hungry, she announced in a May 15 Instagram video. “I am so honored to be part of this moment! This is one of the most meaningful things I have ever been lucky enough to be a part of,” she wrote alongside the video. “Thank you @mccormickspice for including me in this abundant generosity.”
As part of her partnership, the actress hosted a virtual Taco Tuesday night on May 19 on Instagram Live to encourage others to donate to the charitable effort.
George Clooney, Michael Douglas, Hugh Jackman & More
A slew of Hollywood stars came together for a May 15 fundraiser benefiting the Motion Picture and Television Fund’s COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund, which helps support workers in the entertainment industry, particularly those behind-the-scenes.
The one-hour virtual event, “We All Play Our Part: A Benefit for MPTF,” was hosted by Community alum Yvette Nicole Brown and Dancing with the Stars’ Tom Bergeron, and featured stories, poignant messages, musical performances and comedy.
Household names including George Clooney, Michael Douglas, Hugh Jackman, Allison Janney, Jodie Foster, Kris Jenner, Ray Romano, Brad Garrett, Pierce Brosnan, Wanda Sykes, and Ken Jeong joined in on the event.
America’s Food Fund, the fundraising initiative led by DiCaprio, Laurene Powell Jobs and Apple, with support from Ford Foundation, surpassed $25 million in donations on May 12 (thanks in part to Oprah Winfrey). In addition, the Fund recently added No Kid Hungry, Save the Children US and Urban School Food Alliance as beneficiaries, in addition to Feeding America and World Central Kitchen.
DiCaprio has been particularly active in raising money and awareness for causes during the pandemic, partaking also in the All In Challenge, offering a walk-on role in his next movie and tickets to the premiere, raising $1.6 million in the process.
The Emmy winner and 30 Rock alum hosted the star-studded Rise Up New York! The Robin Hood Relief Benefit — a virtual telethon that raised funds for the city's leading poverty-fighting organization on May 11.
Fey got emotional upon seeing the final tally for how much the benefit had raised. "Is this real?" she asked producers, seeing the number for the first time. "Okay. $115 million. We did this. You did this. We are difference makers. $115 million! What a great day for New York.
"Thank you, for everyone, who gave and gave and gave, all over the world," Fey said, holding back tears. "There's so much more to do. Please visit robinhood.org. Donate. Share it. Tell your friends. Please. Let's keep this going."
The actress and her foundation are teaming with microfinance non-profit Kiva.org in hopes of raising $50 million to crowdfund support for more than 1 million marginalized organizations and individuals impacted by COVID-19. Already, they've managed to secure $5 million from larger corporations. "Microfinance not only provides people with the resources to make their lives immediately better, but it also fuels local economies, creates jobs, and helps inspire new business endeavors," Vergara said in a release. "From small shop owners in my home country of Colombia to artists in LA, entrepreneurs and small businesses around the world need our help to survive and recover from this devastating pandemic.”
Ariana Grande & Justin Bieber
While a Bieber x Grande collab is already a gift to many fans, the 26-year-old pop stars announced on May 1 that all net proceeds from sales and streams of their new duet "Stuck with U" will benefit the children of first responders impacted by COVID-19.
"Very excited because we have finally done it. And it’s really good. I’m releasing a new song #StuckwithU with my friend @ArianaGrande next Friday on May 8th Working with our family at @sb_projects and universal music group proceeds from the sales and streams of #StuckwithU will fund grants and scholarships for children of first responders who have been impacted by COVID-19 in partnership with the First Responders Children’s Foundation @1strcf," Bieber shared on Instagram.
"Grateful to announce that my friend and I have partnered with @1strcf and @sb_projects on this release. Proceeds from the streams and sales of #stuckwithu will be donated to first responders children’s foundation to fund grants and scholarships for children of healthcare workers, emergency medical technicians (EMTs), paramedics, police officers and firefighters serving at the front lines during the global pandemic," Grande added on Instagram.
The "Hips Don't Lie" singer donated thousands of N95 masks and ventilators to health care workers in her hometown of Barranquilla, Colombia at the end of April.
The Mayor of Barranquilla thanked her on Twitter, writing a message in Spanish that translates as: “One of the most beloved Barranquilleras in the world is @shakira , and she is also one of the people who most love Barranquilla. Huge thank you for your contribution of thousands of N95 masks for our health care workers, and ventilators that will save lives.”
Machine Gun Kelly
On May 1, rapper Machine Gun Kelly (birth name: Colson Baker) provided free take-out meals at twelve restaurants around Cleveland, Ohio.
In addition to supporting local businesses and the community, his donation also included over 40,000 meals to the Greater Cleveland Food Bank.
“In the spirit of EST (Everyone Stands Together) it’s important that people come together during this time and help out where they can. We want to support the community and local businesses and also the people of Cleveland. Stay safe and healthy,” the rapper said in a statement.
Sacha Baron Cohen & Isla Fisher
The Who Is America? star and his wife, actress Isla Fisher, partnered with Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff and the Daily Mail's new initiative, Mail Force, to donate a plane full of personal protective equipment (PPE) to those fighting coronavirus on the front lines in England on April 28.
The comedian commented on Benioff's announcement of the delivery to London's Heathrow Airport on Twitter, encouraging other businesses to follow suit.
“Isla and I are so happy to have such persistent and generous partners in getting this done. Businesses please follow and get PPE in,” he wrote, adding that they can partner with Project Hope in the United States or Mail Force in the U.K.
According to Page Six, the shipment included 50,000 coveralls and 100,000 masks.
The Oscar-winning actress, 47, is donating Miku breathing monitors to facilities in her hometown of Montgomery, Alabama and New York, the epicenter of the pandemic.
"I, like many of you, have felt helpless in knowing how to help during this time," Spencer wrote on Instagram April 28.
"Seeing what is happening in the communities that I love, I have teamed up with @Mikucare to donate monitors to nursing and medical facilities in Alabama and New York to provide much needed relief to nurses as they navigate care for COVID-19 patients," she continued, sharing a photo of a medical care worker.
The monitors that the Ma star is donating are contactless, and offer "the ability to detect nuanced changes in breathing patterns."
Megan Thee Stallion
The rapper — who is pursuing her bachelor’s degree in health education and hopes to one day open her own assisted living facility — is donating to Park Manor, a nursing facility in her hometown of Houston, Texas.
“[Park Manor] was one of the first places I wanted to donate to in my city. I just feel like these are all things that are going to take me in the right direction to start opening my own facility,” she told PEOPLE. “It’s in my hometown, so I felt like it was only right. I know a lot of people who are struggling with their grandparents. They can’t see their grandparents right now, so I teamed up with Amazon and we gave them these devices where you can video chat with your people.”
“I feel like that was super important because I love my grandma and I can’t even see her right now,” added the star. “I just felt like, I know I’m not the only person going through that, so that’s why I wanted to do that.”
Megan has also been donating to fans impacted by the pandemic financially via Cash App on Twitter.
The Grammy winner announced on April 22 that she has committed $6 million through her BeyGOOD initiative in partnership with Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey's #StartSmall to help those most affected by the coronavirus crisis, particularly those on the frontlines who will need assistance even after the pandemic.
"Beyoncé’s BeyGOOD recognizes the immense mental and personal health burdens being placed on essential workers during the COVID-19 pandemic," a rep for Beyoncé said in a statement.
"In our major cities, African-Americans comprise a disproportionate number of workers in these indispensable occupations, and they will need mental health support and personal wellness care, including testing and medical services, food supplies and food deliveries, both during and after the crisis."
The philanthropic movement is also partnering with the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) to provide support in Houston, New York, New Orleans and Detroit. Personal wellness support will also aid United Memorial Medical Center, Bread of Life, Matthew 25 and several more organizations.
The actress donated $100,000 to Feeding America and partnered with Uber to get the word out about the company's #MoveWhatMatters campaign, for which Uber will donate up $10 per tagged post (up to $50,000) to the same organization, providing meals to food-insecure families. Dove Cameron and Yara Shahidi are also on board, adding in $50,000 apiece.
The Cast of Friends
The stars of the hit sitcom (from left: David Schwimmer, Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox, Matthew Perry, Lisa Kudrow and Matt LeBlanc) are among the many stars putting up once-in-a-lifetime prizes in exchange for donations to the All-In Challenge, which raises money for charities helping with food insecurity. The castmates are offering an all-expenses-paid trip to watch them film their HBO reunion special; other potential prizes include Justin Bieber singing "One Less Lonely Girl" to you personally, a flight for you and seven friends on Drake's jet, and the chance to co-host with Ellen DeGeneres. (Most cost just $10 to enter!)
Theron, her foundation, the Charlize Theron Africa Outreach Project, and their partners CARE and the Entertainment Industry Foundation launched Together for Her to send funds and support the global fight against gender-based violence during COVID-19.
Theron and CTAOP are committing $1 million to COVID-19 relief efforts, with $500,000 specifically designated toward trusted domestic violence shelters and community-based programs through Together for Her.
Donations to Together for Her will help critical services like safe accommodation/shelter, case management, psycho-social support and counseling, helplines, crisis intervention, sexual and reproductive health services, legal services, community-based prevention and advocacy work to address gender-based violence, and additional support mechanisms for women and children experiencing domestic violence.
The NBA legend is donating all of the proceeds from The Last Dance docuseries to charity.
The popular ESPN 10-episode series that premiered on April 19 will garner Jordan roughly $3 million to $4 million, according to Forbes.
“Michael has already committed to donating to Friends of the Children, a national non-profit that provides vulnerable children, ages 4-6, with professional mentors who stay with them from kindergarten through graduation, and we are vetting additional Coronavirus-related causes,” a rep for Jordan told PEOPLE.
On April 18, the actress shared on Instagram that she will be auctioning off the “sentimental” dress she wore to the 2000 Academy Awards to All-In, an initiative that aims to raise $100 million for non-profit organizations that support vulnerable communities amid the pandemic.
“In an effort to focus on organizations providing food assistance, I have joined the #allinchallenge which is raising money for @mealsonwheelsamerica, @nokidhungry, @wckitchen, @feedingamerica and @americasfoodfund,” Paltrow wrote alongside the video announcement.
The Ladies of London alumna and her husband Matt Hermer own two Los Angeles-based restaurants, The Draycott and Olivetta, and have created a program that allows their employees to keep working while helping out those in need.
Aptly titled “You Give. We Cook. They Eat,” their GoFundMe is accepting donations to support their teams so that they can continue to cook and deliver meals to medical workers, first responders, the elderly and others.
“We’ve been donating meals to those in need the last few weeks because we can,” reads the fundraiser description. “We want to donate more — but as our own restaurant industry is facing a crisis of our own, we need your help.”
Lady Gaga & Friends
The singer led the epic star-studded One World: Together at Home benefit concert on April 18, which featured performances from Céline Dion (pictured, left), Andrea Bocelli (pictured, right), Billie Eilish, Elton John, John Legend, Lizzo, Paul McCartney, The Rolling Stones, Kacey Musgraves and more artists.
The A-list special raised nearly $128 million through the COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund to support local and regional charities providing food, shelter and healthcare to those in need amid the ongoing health crisis.
Ashton Kutcher & Mila Kunis
On April 19, the couple announced their new partnership with Nocking Point Wines and Battle Creek Vineyards to launch their very own Quarantine Wine — with 100 percent of their profits to be donated to various charities helping with coronavirus (COVID-19) relief efforts.
"Hi guys, we are launching Quarantine Wine," Kutcher said in a video with Kunis on Twitter.
"One-hundred percent, that’s right, 100 percent of the profits will go to a handful of charities that we have vetted for you and are so proud of during this time," Kunis said in a video on Twitter. "Anything from feeding families who have fallen on hard times …"
"We had fun testing the wine, and it was delicious," Kunis added in the video.
"Here’s a toast to you, and to everything you’re doing to keep people safe," Kutcher said.
The Keeping Up with the Kardashians star surprised elderly shoppers by covering their groceries at various stores in the Los Angeles area in mid-April.
TMZ was the first to report the news. According to the outlet, Kardashian picked up the tab for shoppers at various Trader Joe’s and Ralphs supermarkets, which have been opening early to allow seniors time to shop before other customers.
Additionally, Kardashian also bought store gift cards for more than 200 employees throughout the different stores.
Tom Brady & Gisele Bündchen
The NFL star and supermodel have donated to several organizations since the start of the public health crisis.
On April 2, Brady announced that he had partnered with Wheels Up to donate 10 million meals to Feeding America.
Bündchen also spoke about giving back and supporting others amid the coronavirus pandemic, noting that she has created a special fund to do so.
"I wanted to share some organizations that I am donating to in case anyone would like to support them too. In Brazil, in addition to supporting the Santa Casa de Misericórdia hospital in Porto Alegre, I am creating a special fund, called Luz Alliance, in partnership with the @brazilfound, to help children, the elderly and the most vulnerable families, through the donation of food and hygiene kits," Bündchen said.
Brady and Bündchen donated 750,000 meals to a food bank in Tampa Bay, Florida, and matched that donation to the Greater Boston Food Bank as well.
"Now more than ever, we need to have solidarity and empathy," the supermodel said on Instagram on April 18.
The Breakfast Club host, whose birth name is Raashaun Casey, has raised more than $100,000 to help his fellow artists and DJS who are out of work due to the pandemic.
“I’m a DJ and I know how tough it is for DJs at this time,” Casey told PEOPLE. “Most don’t have healthcare, savings, retirement plans or have their businesses set up where they can get a stimulus check. So how can they provide food on their table? I knew I had to help.”
Casey hosted a live Instagram on Easter Sunday which featured 12 hours of music from 13 different DJs. His initial goal was to raise $50,000, but the final amount was more than double.
“The response was amazing,” says Casey. “We raised over $106K in 12 hours. I loved it. DJs supporting DJs.”
"It’s crazy to me that residents of public housing are still expected to pay their rent when so many New Yorkers can’t even work," Che wrote on Instagram on April 15.
"Obviously I can’t offer much help by myself," he continued. "But in the spirit and memory of my late grandmother, I’m paying one month’s rent for all 160 apartments in the NYCHA building she lived in."
"I know that’s just a drop in the bucket," the comedian added. "So I really hope the city has a better plan for debt forgiveness for all the people in public housing, AT THE VERY LEAST."
Ellen DeGeneres & Portia de Rossi
During a sneak peek of an at-home episode of The Ellen DeGeneres Show, set to air on April 17, the host announced that she and her wife are donating $1 million to the All-In Challenge, an initiative that aims to raise $100 million for non-profit organizations supporting vulnerable communities amid the coronavirus crisis.
A few of the organizations taking part in the initiative include Meals on Wheels, No Kid Hungry, America’s Food Fund, Feeding America and World Central Kitchen.
“There are just some things that we can’t ignore, and just when I thought I couldn’t love him more, listen to what my friend Leo DiCaprio is doing,” DeGeneres said on her show. “He started something called the All-In Challenge. He’s trying to raise $100 million for a bunch of different charities who are helping feed Americans during this crisis.”
The actress and comedian donated 2,500 KN95 masks to the New York hospital where her childhood best friend Jen Cloudman works as a nurse caring for patients with COVID-19.
The Trainwreck star, 38, teamed up with Bethenny Frankel's foundation BStrong to make the donation in early April.
Schumer was determined to help, Cloudman tells PEOPLE, after she heard that her friend and fellow nurses at Mount Sinai South Nassau were "so afraid of running out" of the medical masks currently in short supply across the country.
The donation also included 2,500 surgical masks and 2,500 "corona kits" with sanitizer and prevention essentials. In a moving video shared to her Instagram, Schumer and the hospital staff in Oceanside, New York, got to thank each other through FaceTime after the supplies arrived.