- Posted December 20, 2009 by
Los Angeles, California
This iReport is part of an assignment:
Showbiz 'Avengers' showdown!
The Night Before Christmas
I really wanted to create a gift that gives back and could make a difference in my community. With the help of the many celebrities that I meet through my work with CNN ireport, I created this special performance of the holiday classic The Night Before Christmas to help increase awareness of the power of reading to children.
Spending just 15 or 20 minutes of your time reading with a child is a simple act that can have a huge impact for EVERY child, anywhere.
The celebrities involved – from modern day Hercules Kevin Sorbo, comedian Carlos Mencia and NASCAR’s Jimmie Johnson to American Idol Adam Lambert and the voice of Desperate Housewives Brenda Strong – all took a few minutes out of their day, wherever they happened to be, to share this story with our children. Each special guest read a page from the beloved poem and some of them were able to autographed a copy of the book, which will be auctioned off on eBay to benefit the National Foundation for Autism Research’s San Diego Autism Teachers Grant program.
NFAR is a nonprofit is doing a lot of great things to help support families with autism in my hometown of San Diego. Autism is a growing issue that not everyone understands and impacts not just the individual families, but also our school systems and our community as a whole. Just last week the CDC announced new figures estimating that 1 in 110 children are diagnosed with the disorder.
NFAR provides financial support to teachers for materials and equipment (including books!) that improve the way students with autism learn, which is especially important now in California with statewide educational budget cuts. Since 2005, NFAR has awarded grants to 155 classrooms across every school district in San Diego county and this past year, they have seen their grant requests increase significantly.
Everyone donated time and talent so that ALL proceeds of the book auction will go towards making a difference in the education of children with autism, to help them live full, healthy and meaningful lives. Bidding begins Monday, December 21 and more info can be found on www.NFAR.org.
I believe it is important to give back and help make a difference, especially during these tough economic times. Through this project, I discovered that your time can be just as valuable as donations. Hopefully, everyone will find a similar inspiration this holiday!
Celebrities in order of appearance:
Bond, James Bond George Lazenby
Comedian Carlos Mencia
Sex and the City 2 star Max Ryan
Highlander Adrian Paul
NASCAR champion Jimmie Johnson
American Girl Sammi Hanratty
Acclaimed muralist Wyland
Hercules Kevin Sorbo
Desperate Housewives Brenda Strong
Five for Fighting (“100 Years” & “Chances”)
Musician Howie Day (“Collide”)
Musician Joshua Radin (“I’d Rather Be With You”)
American Idol Adam Lambert
Train (“Hey, Soul Sister” & “Drops of Jupiter”)
Please enjoy the video, share with your friends & family, and I challenge you to make a difference.
Video by: Chris Morrow
Follow Chris on Twitter: www.twitter.com/morrowchris