Some celebrities start their own charities and focus on a single cause, while other make a difference with a lot of money, time and effort for plenty of worthy causes.
Check out some of the most charitable celebrities, who put their money where they mouth is, and really make a difference. From UNHCR Goodwill Ambassadors to celebrities who always donate big in case of a tragedy that affects thousands or millions, here are the stars that deserve humanitarian awards.
Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie
While Brad Pitt made a big contribution to the reconstruction of New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina, Angelina Jolie has focused on the issue of refugees, as a Goodwill Ambassador of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees.
Together, they’re definitely one of the most charitable couples in Hollywood, with donations of millions to impoverished countries. Jolie even donated all the profits from her limited edition Style of Jolie jewelry line to build all-girls schools in Afghanistan.
The first African-American billionaire is also one of the most charitable celebrities. According to Forbes, Winfrey had donated over $400 million to educational causes by 2012. Her charity work includes a $40 million Leadership Academy for Girls in South Africa, big hurricane relief efforts in the US and Oprah’s Angel Network has raised over $80 for different charities across the world.
When it comes to philanthropy in the music business, Bono is definitely a front runner. With a focus on global poverty, the U2 lead singer has contributed to Band Aid concerts and become one of the Most Influential People according to Time magazine for his charity work. He’s raised millions to fight AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria.
A vegan and animal rights activits, talk show host Ellen DeGeneres is also one of the most charitable celebrities when it comes to caused that benefit humans. She originated the most retweeted selfie of all time at the 2014 Academy Awards and with the help of Samsung raised over $3 million for St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital and The Humane Society of the United States.
An advocate for resolution of the Darfur conflict, George Clooney has been involved in a lot more causes than the Sudanese genocide. Over the years, he’s contributed to Not On Our Watch Project, an organization that fights again mass atrocities on a global level and he also organized the “Hope for Haiti Now” telethon in 2010.
Definitely one of the most charitable celebrities in the past year, Taylor Swift showed her humanitarian interest by giving away presents on her 24th birthday, but she’s also involved in other causes, donating money or her own time for the prevention of young homeless people and also supported the Nashville Symphony with a $100,000 donation.
Being one of the richest musicians of all time has helped Sir Paul McCartney champion many causes throughout the years. An animal rights activists who’s been a vegetarian since 1975 and has performed in many charity concerts, McCartney has also joined campaigns against land mines.
Definitely one of the most charitable celebrities, Sandra Bullock has donated in the seven figures to the American Red Cross and made generous donations after earthquakes and tsunamis that affected Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Japan, and Haiti. Bullock received the Favorite Humanitarian Award at the 2013 People’s Choice Awards thanks to her charity work.
After joining George Clooney in raising awareness for the mass atrocities committed in Darfur, Matt Damon also founded Water.org, a charity initiative that hopes to improves the water crisis in Africa. He’s also an spokesperson for Feeding America.
Raising more than $125 million through the Elton John AIDS Foundation, the singer is definitely one of the most charitable celebrities. His charity organization doesn’t just raise money for research, it also invests in programs that fight discrimination against those affected by HIV/AIDS.