Gifts for star-struck
your sister says all she wants for Christmas is Nick Carter in a
big, red bow. Unfortunately for her, he's not for sale. But you
can get a piece of him online -- and help a good cause at the same
Whether you want to get something tangible for your
money or just make a donation in someone's name, why not follow
in a favorite star's footsteps? Here's how some stars are helping
and how you can do the same.
Buy a bit of fame
Charity Fundraising has several ongoing auctions benefiting
charity -- many featuring celebrity items.
Recently on the auction block were framed handprints
by Nick Carter, Hillary Duff, Andrew Firestone, Trista Sutter, Kwame
Jackson, Venus Williams and Randy Jackson, who joined with other
celebrities to raise money for Ronald McDonald House Charities.
Many of the items auctioned in the past have intrinsic value --
other than being autographed by someone famous -- like Jon Bon Jovi's
autographed Stratocaster guitar and LeAnn Rimes' personal velvet
Celebrity auction items move quickly on and off the
block with new items added regularly. If you don't see anything
from a particular celebrity or cause, keep checking.
Small gifts, big support
If you don't have the cash to back the hefty price of some celebrity
auctions, make a buy at their favorite charity. Most offer more
than just a coffee mug.
Jimmy Buffett's Save
the Manatee Club offers manatee socks for $3.95. Paul Newman
Own salsa, steak sauce, and salad dressing to benefit various
charities, including affordable housing, elderly groups and hunger
relief. Harrison Ford fans can buy coffee to benefit Conservation
International -- where Ford is a vice chair. Lucille Ball memorabilia
Library benefits the Pediatric AIDS foundation. A favorite of
Sigourney Weaver, the Dian
Fossey Gorilla Fund International, sells hand-sewn wall hangings
and other crafts made in Rwanda.
Some celebrities, such as Paul Newman and Oprah Winfrey, go one
step further when giving back to the less fortunate: They launch
their very own charities to raise funds for causes dear to their
Rather than buy a piece of memorabilia for a friend,
help them mimic their favorite star's actions by donating to the
When Princess Diana walked through a land mine-infested
field, the footage was broadcast worldwide, bringing public awareness
to land mine victims and forcing governments to explain, if not
change, their positions on land mine use. Since her death, the Diana
Princess of Wales Memorial Fund continues to support those suffering
from AIDS, leprosy and land mines.
Oprah Winfrey, one of America's favorite talk-show
hosts, created Oprah's
Angel Network to encourage her fans to reach out to those in
need. One hundred percent of the donations go directly to the various
charities she supports.