Africa Ben Stiller joins YouTube stars to fight Somalia famine
By Duarte Garrido, Entertainment Reporter
Ben Stiller is leading a star-studded campaign to raise $2m to fly food and water to Somalia through Turkish Airlines.
After raising $1m in less than 24 hours thanks to the power of social media, the Zoolander star is now reaching out to other celebrities to donate funds to the campaign.
The movement was started by French Vine and Snapchat star Jerome Jarre, who set up a movement called Love Army For Somalia, trying to convince Turkish Airlines to use one flight to ship aid to the drought stricken country.
“One shipment – providing immediate relief for immediate need,” the Go Fund Me page reads.
The airline is the only company which currently flies to Somalia and agreed to take 60 tonnes of food on one of their commercial planes if Jarre managed to get the funds.
The Stiller foundation and American YouTube star Casey Neistat joined the campaign and the goal was reached in less than a day.
“Not only they are making available a full cargo flight that can fly 60 tons of food, but they agreed to let us ship food containers on their commercial aircraft to Somalia, until the end of the famine,” Jarre wrote.
The group has teamed up with the American Refugee Committee (ARC),a non-governmental organisation currently on the ground.
“They are an NGO we trust and we know they will be doing what’s right with every food we will give them,” Jarre wrote.
Now, the goal has been pushed to $2m and seen dozens of high profile celebrities donating generous amounts, with DJ Calvin Harris topping the bill with $25,000.
The next shipment, according to Stiller, will be dedicated to bringing water to the country.
“For water, we’ve learned from multiple NGOs on the ground, that the most sustainable thing to do is get water trucks to be delivered,” the campaign page reads.
To reach the new goal, Stiller has shared a video nominating four other celebrities as ambassadors to the cause, asking them to do the same.
“The idea is that every person who donated money, all of you 50,000 people, nominate three other friends to be a part of this,” Stiller said.
“So, I’m going to nominate three people. Lewis Hamilton, Formula One champion, super cool dude,” he added.
“Emma Watson, because she cares about people – and she’s also cool. And Cara Delevingne, because she’s really, really ridiculously good looking and she also cares about what’s going on.”
The group has guaranteed “full transparency”, and to update donors to the “success of our mission”.
“Each water truck is about $250 and about 2,000 litres,” they said.
“Those 2,000 litres will support approximately 100 families of six people.”