More than a dozen celebrities are urging their fans and the public to donate to the American Red Cross this holiday season and give a gift that will help people when they need it most.

Celebrities who are actively encouraging support for the Red Cross holiday giving campaign include those on the National Celebrity Cabinet as well as other entertainment supporters. Actors Nick Cannon, Jackie Chan, Ted Danson and Alyssa Milano; television personalities Nate Berkus, Leeza Gibbons, Dr. Phil McGraw and Nancy O'Dell; and award-winning artists Amy Grant, Wynonna Judd, Maroon 5 and Darius Rucker have lent their support.

The Red Cross holiday giving campaign features an online 2011 Holiday Catalog that enables people to make a tax-deductible charitable donation this holiday season that could provide items such as food and shelter for a disaster victim for a day; a military comfort kit with a robe, phone or music card and other supplies for a wounded warrior; or basic necessities for a family who lost everything in a disaster.

Catalog gifts are contributions toward a Red Cross program area, not a donation to a specific project or item. The donations will be used to provide assistance where it is needed most within the program area; the remaining money is put to use where it is needed most.

Emmy and Golden Globe Award-winning Actor Ted Danson narrates the Red Cross holiday television advertisement, now airing across the country this season, as the voice of animated claymation character Fred. Fred is frenetically shopping for “stuff” for the holidays but then drives viewers to give meaningful gifts via the Holiday Giving Catalog—gifts that really mean something.

American actor, comedian, rapper, record producer and radio host Nick Cannon lent his voice for the national radio public service announcements.

National Celebrity Cabinet member and television personality Nate Berkus made a financial donation toward the general Red Cross mission through the catalog. “I want my gifts to matter. And I know my support of the American Red Cross matters whenever and wherever disaster strikes. Join me,” stated Berkus.

“You can really make a difference for a lot of families by contributing to the Red Cross Holiday Gift catalog,” said Dr. Phil, who along with his wife Robin will be promoting Red Cross inspirational items for military members on his upcoming December 16 holiday show. Donations in support of members of the military are among the most popular Red Cross contributions.

“Join me this holiday season. Give your family and loved ones the gift of hope,” said Leeza Gibbons. Gibbons has lent her name, image and voice to promoting the Red Cross campaign in Simon Malls and select Circle K stores. Gibbons, along with other celebrity cabinet members including artist Amy Grant and designer Nate Berkus, also appear in the holiday catalog with images and supporting quotes.

Celebrities are also reaching tens of millions of their fans and supporters by using their digital media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and websites to promote donations to the Red Cross.

For example, Rucker informed his Twitter followers, “This year, support @RedCross services and help give the gift that saves the day.”

Jackie Chan, Leeza Gibbons, Wynonna Judd, Alyssa Milano, Maroon 5, Nancy O’Dell, Darius Rucker and Amy Grant have “tweeted” or made Facebook or website postings, urging their followers to support the Red Cross holiday campaign.

“I love knowing that the gifts I give to loved ones through the Red Cross Holiday Giving Catalog are truly saving and changing lives,” said Grant.

“If you want to give a gift this holiday season sure to touch someone’s heart, give to the American Red Cross. No doubt it will make a difference in someone’s life,” said O’Dell.

Each celebrity’s work on the holiday campaign is just the latest example of their support of the Red Cross.

A telephone survey of 1,020 adults conducted earlier this fall found that even though 67 percent of Americans didn’t think the economic downturn would last this long, they still want to give to charity, with more than seven out of 10 saying they expect to donate more or about the same this holiday season as they did last year.

Sixty-eight percent of Americans believe that because of the economy, it’s important to give something to charity. That’s a 10 percentage point increase over the 58 percent who felt that way last year.

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