23:06 GMT29 November 2020
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    Celebrities are known for endorsing good causes and becoming humanitarian experts, but how well known are they for going above and beyond and actually "putting their money where their mouth is"?

    British singer and celebrity Lily Allen, visited the Calais Jungle camp in France and her interview with one of the refugees there was shown on the BBC. At one stage Ms. Allen broke down in tears, apologizing on behalf of the UK for not doing enough to help.

    "It just seems that at three different intervals in this young boy's life, the English in particular have put you in danger."

    "We've bombed your country, put you in the hands of the Taliban and now put you in danger of risking your life to get into our country. I apologise on behalf of my country. I'm sorry for what we have put you through," she said.    

    However Ms. Allen came under fire from many who said she had no right to apologize on behalf of the whole of the UK, especially when she hasn't taken any refugees in or sponsored anyone herself.

    Below are just some of the names of those rich and famous who ​have helped refugees through the crisis versus those who have done very little but talk the talk.

    Lily Allen

    Lilly Allen was devastated at the news that refugees fleeing conflict zones in the Middles East were living in squalid conditions in the Calais Jungle camp, especially children who were forced to flee their homes. 

    Ms. Allen was so upset that at one stage during the BBC interview, she broke down and cried.

    But has Ms. Allen taken in a refugee/refugees into one of her two luxury homes or is crying in front of the cameras the extent of her raising awareness of the situation?

    Jude Law

    British actor Jude Law visited the Calais camp as well to highlight the issues of the refugees and to call on the government to do more.

    British actor Jude Law gestures during a visit to the Jungle migrant camp in Calais on February 21, 2016.
    © AFP 2020 / Philippe Huguen
    British actor Jude Law gestures during a visit to the "Jungle" migrant camp in Calais on February 21, 2016.

    Mr. Law was one of 145 celebrities to sign a letter calling on then-Prime Minister David Cameron to allow hundreds of migrant children from the camp to come to the UK.

    As French authorities prepare to close down the camp in Calais, UK Home Secretary Amber Rudd told MPs recently that the UK has agreed to verify a list of child refugees with the legal right to enter Britain.

    "Once we have that official list we will move quickly within days and remove very quickly those children," Ms. Rudd said.

    Seems like Jude Law's campaigning efforts were not wasted.

    Vivienne Westwood

    Fashion icon and designer Vivienne Westwood supported the launch of an initiative called London for Refugees, launched by Maddalena Kind. All proceeds from sales are donated to charity Echo 100 Plus which provides food, shelter, water to refugees in Greece.

    Ms. Westwood has donated clothes to the initiative and including rare pieces such as an YSL couture evening cape and a 1960s Chanel suit.

    Archbishop of Canterbury

    The Archbishop of Canterbury announced that he would take in refugees and work with the government to provide safe housing for those in need.

    Justin Welby welcomed a family into his own home:

    "It is an enormous privilege to welcome a family to live in a cottage in the grounds of Lambeth Palace," he said.

    Anneka Rice

    UK presenter Anneka Rice, is well known for facing challenges. Her TV program, Challenge Anneka that ran from 1987 to 1995 was a popular hit.

    The presenter went onto renovate a Romanian orphanage, equip a camp in Malawi and she also took in a Syrian refugee into her home.

    Ms. Rice may be not as well known — or rich — as Lily Allen or Jude Law, but is not shy of lending a helping hand, especially to those who need it.

    Andy Murray

    Tennis champion, Andy Murray, is well known for his game, set and match on and off court.

    The Scottish professional tennis player pledged US$75.00 for every ace he scored last year.

    A true champ and a generous soul!

    J.K. Rowling

    Writer and Harry Potter author, J.K. Rowling, used her Twitter account last year to discuss the refugee crisis.

    Ms. Rowling decided to dedicate the whole month of September to raising awareness of the plight of refugees.

    Benedict Cumberbatch

    Actor Benedict Cumberbatch, whilst playing Hamlet in August 2015, made a speech asking theatregoers to donate what they could to the help the Syrian refugee crisis.

    But how much many has the Sherlock star donated himself?

    Sir Bob Geldof

    After photos emerged of the drowned Syrian boy, Aylan Kurdi in 2015, Mr. Geldof said that he would take in refugees into his mansion.

    "I'm prepared — I'm lucky, I've a place in Kent and a flat in London — me and Jeanne [partner] would be prepared to take three families immediately in our place in Kent and a family in our flat in London, immediately, and put them up until such time as they can get going and get a purchase on their future," he said.  

    However, a year on, Mr. Geldof has still not taken in any refugees…

    Yvette Cooper

    Last year, Labour MP Yvette Cooper, was one of the many public figures who came out saying that "refugees were welcome." Ms. Cooper said she would take in refugees to help with the crisis.

    "If that's what it took and that's what was needed, then of course…" she said.

    However as in Mr. Geldof's case, we are yet to see this materialize. 


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    awareness, celebrities, crisis, actor, charity, politics, humanitarian aid, refugees, JK Rowling, Jude Law, Yvette Cooper, Vivienne Westwood, Benedict Cumberbatch, Andy Murray, Calais, United Kingdom, France
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