May 19, 2016
On May 26th, the second annual Red Nose Day will take place in the U.S. Red Nose Day is a campaign designed to bring people together to have fun, raise awareness for social issues, and ultimately help lift kids and families out of poverty.
Comic Relief UK, a British charity that is responsible for the first Red Nose Day, began the movement in response to the famine in East Africa. The campaign has succeeded in raising over $1 billion globally since launching 25 years ago. More recently, Comic Relief UK established a U.S. based public charity, Comic Relief Inc,* that has been the key to bringing this movement to the United States. 2015 was the first Red Nose Day in the United States and it raised more than $23 million.
Red Nose Day features a multitude of events and activities. One of the more well-known corporate initiatives this year is M&M’s #MakeMLaugh challenge. This hashtag has been a staple of this year’s publicity for the day. Anyone who posts a selfie with a red nose, which can be purchased at Walgreens, can use the hashtag #MakeMLaugh and M&M’s will donate $1 to Red Nose Day (up to $500,000). A number of celebrities have supported the #MakeMLaugh challenge, including the likes of comedian Tracy Morgan, actress Miranda Cosgrove, longtime TV personality Jerry Springer, and Nascar driver Kyle Busch.
Red Nose Day also makes an effort to get students involved as well. Red Nose Day in School features opportunities for fundraising as well as educational programs. This initiative helps increase students' awareness of poverty, poverty related issues, and social responsibility.
This year's campaign will culminate in a Live 2 hour NBC telethon, hosted by Craig Ferguson, on Thursday, May 26th. The show will feature a number of celebrities including Ellen DeGeneres, Jack Black, Paul Rudd, Julianne Moore, Liam Neeson, Sarah Silverman, Tracy Morgan, Key & Peele, Anna Kendrick, Seth Rogen, Zac Efron and Ellie Kemper, along with Kristen Bell, Emma Watson, Chris “Ludacris” Bridges, Rose Byrne, Blake Griffin, Emma Thompson, Chloë Grace Moretz, Steve Buscemi, Danny Trejo, Adam Devine and Ron Funches.
Where will the money raised via the telethon, red nose sales and other events go? The campaign says it will use half for aid in the United States.The other half of the money will be spent in poor and impoverished communities in Latin America, Asia, and Africa. Specifically, the funds will be distributed and allocated between various charities, many of which are rated by Charity Navigator.** All money raised is in support of projects that ensure child safety, health, and education.
Supporting the Red Nose Day campaign is a creative way to bring attention to impoverished children and people in general. However, the best and most impactful way to make a difference in this social issue, is by donating to one of the 3 and 4-star charities listed on the right hand side of this article. To do so, simply click the charity’s name to review its rating and, when you are ready, add it to your Giving Basket to make a donation. Red Nose Day is a special day to come together, have fun, and most importantly, make a difference for kids.
*Charity Navigator does not evaluate Comic Relief Inc. as it does not yet meet all of our rating criteria. However, registered users of the Charity Navigator website can still vote to have it rated as soon as it meets our criteria. Vote Now!
**Two organizations that are receiving funds do not meet our criteria for evaluation. Those organizations are the Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, which has not yet filed enough Form 990s for us to rate it, and the other is The Global Fund, which is actually a public-private partnership and not a tax-deductible 501(c)(3) organization.