Well, the first International Day of U2 is almost here (September 25) and in light of recent events with the guys having to cancel the September 16th St Louis concert and Bono’s thoughtful words thereafter, I feel it is even more important to celebrate this band. They take good care of us, ensuring fans’ safety while spreading a message of non-violence, equality and love.
Their determination to use their voices to better this world is one of the many reasons I love this band to the level I do. They have inspired me and so many fans, and even world leaders, to “Be the Change” in the world that we want to see.
So, one of the many things I plan to do to celebrate U2 Day is to acknowledge all U2 does for the world and to “Be the Change” by donating to a couple of the organizations that U2 are involved in and by taking action in some of the campaigns.
I invite anyone else who has the desire and ability to donate to also do so on September 25 (and, really, any day of the year!) in celebration of U2. Every little bit makes a difference whether it’s pennies or more, but if you cannot donate money, consider volunteering or somehow taking action in support of these organizations, or your own favorite charity/NGO.
Don’t forget to hashtag whatever you do with #U2Day17 and #InternationalDayofU2
(You don’t have to say how much you donated in time or money, just spread the word)!
To make things easy, here is a list of the band’s favorite organizations and links to ways you can become involved:
10 NGOs/Charities Supported by U2
1. American Red Cross: U2 have been putting up the American Red Cross symbol on the screen at their recent concerts as a response to the hurricanes that have devastated parts of the USA and several Atlantic countries. The Red Cross exists in several countries and has an international base as well. Like all Red Cross organizations, the American branch works to prevent and alleviate “human suffering in the face of emergencies by mobilizing the power of volunteers and the generosity of donors.”
2. Amnesty International: The band have been long-time supporters of this global human rights movement. What began as a letter-writing campaign to free prisoners of conscience, Amnesty now provides well-respected research, advocacy, campaigns, and action to a myriad of human rights issues, including the death penalty, discrimination, arms control, torture, and sexual and reproductive rights.
Here are the links for donating and taking action at the international branch; however, most countries have national and regional branches if you wish to contribute closer to home. You can look for your closest branch here.
3. Angiogenesis Foundation: When Edge’s daughter, Sian, was diagnosed with leukemia, he became interested in the relationship between health and cancer, and angiogenesis (the formation of blood vessels) in particular. The Edge is currently on the board of the Angiogenesis Foundation, “the world’s only organization dedicated exclusively to unlocking the mystery and promise of angiogenesis” and how “angiogenesis-based therapy could conquer the major diseases of our time.”
You can donate here.
4. Chernobyl Children International: CCI delivers programs “that restore hope, alleviate suffering and protect current and future generations in the Chernobyl regions.” The band have been long-time supporters, and Bono’s wife is a member of the board. You can donate here and learn how to get involved here.
5. Greenpeace: The band are also involved in environmental issues, including ensuring their tours are as green as possible. Since their early days, they have supported Greenpeace, “an independent, campaigning organization which uses non-violent, creative confrontation to expose global environmental problems, and to force the solutions which are essential to a green and peaceful future. Greenpeace’s goal is to ensure the ability of the earth to nurture life in all its diversity.”
6. ONE: Co-founded by Bono and Bobby Shriver, ONE is “a campaigning and advocacy organization of more than 8 million people around the world taking action to end extreme poverty and preventable disease, particularly in Africa.” ONE does not solicit funding from the general public and instead asks that people donate to one of their partner organizations if they want to contribute financially.
The international website that I’ve linked above provides a number of ways that people can take action. You can also go to specific country pages as well for more ways to take part in ONE. The Canada website, for example, has a volunteer page that directs the viewer to the provincial contact, should you wish to volunteer.
7. Mencap: Mencap is a UK organization that works towards “a world where people with a learning disability are valued equally, listened to and included. Everything (they) do is about making this world a reality.” Their work includes transforming society’s attitudes towards learning disabilities and helping improve the quality of life for those with learning disabilities and their families.
8. Music Rising: Co-founded by The Edge, Bob Ezrin and a number of music industry partners, Music Rising was established after Hurricane Katrina destroyed much of New Orleans. Recognizing the importance of the music culture in New Orleans, not only as a major source of income for many citizens, but also the role music plays in healing communities and individuals after such devastation, Music Rising provides instruments to musicians, students, churches and community programs. They also award grants to (re-)build music centres/halls and to support musical and cultural organizations and events with the goal of “helping music always rise after disaster.”
Music Rising is already underway to help replace instruments lost during the recent hurricanes. You can donate here. 100% of the donations go directly towards the programs (no overhead).
9. (RED): (RED), also co-founded by Bono and Bobby Shriver, “harness(es) the power of people and companies to help fight AIDS.” (RED) partners with major brands around the world to create (RED) products. Up to 50% of the profits from these products are contributed to The Global Fund. One hundred percent of The Global Fund is then used to fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria on the ground, no overhead. This includes “prevention, treatment, counselling and HIV testing and care services.”
10. Walk in My Shoes: This is the mental health awareness, education and support campaign that Adam supports. Established by the St Patrick’s Mental Health Services in Ireland, Walk in My Shoes offers a helpline and other support services staffed by “mental health professionals, who offer practical advice and direction to people in need of help.” They also provide educational resources for raising awareness and improving mental health strategies for schools, colleges, workplaces and individuals.
There isn’t a page for donating; however, the resources are wonderful and you may wish to introduce them to your school or workplace.
That’s just a few orgs, I’m sure there are others that U2 have been involved with. Do you you know of any? If so, please feel free to leave a comment below with a link so that people can check it out if they wish!
I have a number of other things I plan to do to celebrate U2 Day this year, which I will post on this blog or social media (you can follow me on Instagram and Twitter through the links to the right or the bottom of the page) throughout the week, leading up to the 25th. Feel free to join me or add your own fun to the day!
If you are planning an event or anything, please let me know and I will post it on my list of things happening around the world – it’s a short list as we speak, but let’s grow this baby!
There’s also a Facebook event page for the day – come join us!
And, as always, please feel free to share this blog!