Red Nose Day: What’s it all about?

Charity hopes to raise funds and awareness for impoverished children around the world.

Probably almost everybody knows that today is Red Nose Day, what with the NBC special set to air tonight and all the celebrities set to attend, but what exactly is Red Nose Day all about?

The celebration is part of a world wide campaign to raise money and awareness for children living in poverty all across the globe, and has been going on since 1985, but only fairly recently being noticed in the United States.  The British charity, Comic Relief, started by writer-director Richard Curtis, has raised more than $1 billion for impoverished kids over the last 25 years.  Other countries have their own Red Nose Days as well, namely Finland, Germany and Iceland.

The United States raised over $23 million last year for the Red Nose Day Fund, and tonight’s special will feature over 65 celebrities contributing musical numbers and comedy routines, to solicit donations.  Craig Ferguson will be the host for this year’s festivities.

Founder Curtis told CNN in an interview last year, “For many years, I have dreamt of bringing Red Nose Day to the US, and I am so excited that we have teamed up with NBC, who will do such a brilliant job on this.”

He continued, “Experience has taught me how extraordinarily compassionate and generous Americans can be, and I’ve lived my life in awe of American comedy talent. So putting those two things together will, I hope, create an amazing event that will really make a massive difference to the lives of millions of children and their families in the US and in the poorest countries around the world.”

You can support the effort by purchasing your own red nose exclusively at Walgreen’s stores.  The company raised over $5 million for the charity last year promoting the event, and Linn Jordan, Director of Retail Marketing for the drug chain, says they have already doubled that amount in 2016.

Charities that have partnered with the fund raising campaign include, The Boys & Girls Club, Children’s Health Fund, Covenant House, Oxfam America, Save the Children and The Global Fund.

The TV special will be broadcast live from Los Angeles tonight at 9 PM EST on NBC.

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