(November 5th, 2016 Los Angeles, CA) – Kevin Bacon is currently working on his new Amazon Prime Original “I Love Dick” and took some time this weekend to meet up with the talented comedian Ron Funches best known for his roll as Shelly on NBC’s show “Undateable”. Both wanted to spread some joy and awareness to the people over at “School on Wheels” through Kevin Bacon’s Foundation, SixDegrees.Org.
School on Wheels, Inc. is a nonprofit organization founded in 1993 to serve the educational
needs of homeless children from Kindergarten through Grade 12. These are children living in shelters, motels, group foster homes, cars, campgrounds and on the street. Thousands of volunteers in six counties in Southern California work one-on- one with children whose
homelessness prevents them from getting the academic stability and help they desperately need. These volunteer tutors come from all backgrounds and professions, with a shared goal: to reach out to a child, to teach, mentor, and assist in their educational life.
School on Wheels gives extra time and attention to homeless students so that they can be
successful in school. The program serves as a consistent support system to homeless students at a time of great stress and fear, helping them understand they are cared about and important.
– One-on- one weekly tutoring with a volunteer
– Backpacks, school supplies and school uniforms
– Help in locating lost records and assistance in entering school
– A Learning Center located in the heart of Skid Row
– Scholarships for educational opportunities and enrichment.
Funches, who performed the same Saturday evening at The Ice House in Pasadena, is one of a long list of celebrities that have supported the SixDegrees effort to demonstrate that we are all connected to one another. The celebrity partnerships within SixDegrees illustrate that you are never too busy to give back and create a lasting impact to deserving organizations in the communities you are working in.
Ron Funches is a very funny stand up comedian with a unique delivery and lovable demeanor. You just want to hug and squeeze him like a big stuffed bear. His easy going, inventive style sounds the way fresh chocolate chip cookies taste. Ron performs stand up all over the United States impressing audiences everywhere. Ron’s other television appearances include, recurring roles on Comedy Central’s @MIDNIGHT, KROLL SHOW, DRUNK HISTORY and many more. Currently you can catch Ron’s voice in the upcoming Dreamworks animated film TROLLS and look out for him in early 2017 on NBC’s new show, Powerless.
Kevin Bacon and SixDegrees.org drop by Peggy Kinnanes in Arlington Heights, IL Thursday,
August 18th at 5:00pm to help support Public Allies with a guest judge appearance at a Pitch Contest for six of their not-for-profit alumni.
The Bacon Brothers were set to play the evening of August 18th, 2016 at the Metropolis in
Arlington Heights, IL. Beforehand, SixDegrees.org, Kevin Bacon’s Foundation, decided to do a surprise event during happy hour at a local Irish Pub in the heart of Arlington Heights. Actor, Director and Philanthropist, Kevin Bacon founded the nonprofit SixDegrees.org to connect musicians, athletes, actors, and other influencers to local charities and events to rally support by making them exciting and accessible through leveraging social media, video spots, and live appearances.
Peggy Kinnanes, a locally family owned restaurant known for giving back to the
community, generously decided to partner with SixDegrees in a fundraiser to benefit Public Allies. Public Allies is a national movement founded in 1992 and grounded in the conviction that everyone leads. Pubic Allies believes that everyone can make a difference and can work to inspire more citizens to believe in themselves, step up, and act. Public Allies Chicago was founded in 1993 by now-First Lady Michelle Obama. Since 1993, more than 600 Allies have completed the apprenticeship program in Chicago, with more than 80% continuing careers in nonprofits and public service.
Peggy Kinnanes held a Pitch Contest where Six of Allies alumni were given a speed dating chance to tell Kevin Bacon why their charity deserved to win a donation from SixDegrees. The organizations that presented were Nicole Wilson, Nefeteri Okine and Nicaea Rapier with The Chicago SNSS History Project, Aida Sanchez with Students Run Chi, Burrell Poe with Compassion IT, Quenna Barrett with Intergenerational Theatre of the Oppressed Project at the University of Chicago Arts Incubator, Lindsey Baumgarter with Treatment Alternatives for Safe Communities (TASC, Inc.), and J.D. Van Slyke with Polaris
Charter Academy’s Voices for Change. In the end, Kevin Bacon generously gave all six
charitable organizations a donation to help in their efforts.
Kevin Bacon and Lake Street Dive have already expressed some love for each other (not a shocker, given that the band’s Twitter profile describes them as “two girls, two guys, and a whole lotta feelings”), so SixDegrees.org figured they’d share an interest in connecting good causes to concert tours as well.
After more research, it was clear that supporting local communities is part of the DNA of Lake Street Dive, so it came as no surprise that the band was thrilled to volunteer while in Northern Virginia for a concert at Wolf Trap National Park for the Performing Arts.
SixDegrees.org received word that Food for Others, a food bank and food pantry feeding over 1,000 families each week in Northern Virginia, was about to lose to retirement the Executive Director that has led the organization for the past 12 years. The band surprised her by delivering a donation and then showing off their raw talent and belting out a perfect rendition of You Go Down Smooth in the middle of the warehouse, completely unplugged.
After the song, the entire band volunteered to stock the new food pantry portion of Food for Others. Please check out Lake Street Dive in a town near you this summer and thank them for connecting causes to their Side Pony tour! Great music and good people, an all-around class act.
Donate food, time, or money to help Food for Others. You can also help end childhood hunger in your neighborhood by connecting with No Kid Hungry. The No Kid Hungry campaign connects kids in need with nutritious food and teaches their families how to cook healthy, affordable meals. The campaign also engages the public to make ending child hunger a national priority.
Peach’s Neet Feet lets children facing chronic illness or disability design custom shoes, then it gets volunteer artists to paint shoes according to the child’s specifications, rallying individuals to “Hustle Kindness” in the process. Selena did her part by delivering the shoes back stage and then inviting Nova and her parents to enjoy her show as VIPs.
Nova is 6/12 years old. She loves all things Star Wars, bugs, reading, playing the piano, being with her friends, and the Boston Red Sox. She also happens to have Pfeiffer Syndrome, a rare genetic condition that affected the growth in her skull, face, neck and arms. Because of this Nova looks a little different than many of her friends. She is tracheotomy dependent and has hearing loss. This does not dictate who she is.
A little story to tell you a bit about her. Monday we were at the park, she wanted to go to the playground. After a while she made friends with a couple of kids. A boy came up behind her and made a comment about her appearance. It wasn’t nice. She ignored him and went back to playing with the other kids. When talking about the incident with her later, I asked if she ever wanted to respond to those kinds of things (thinking I could help arm her with words should she decide to say something). We have always done the “just ignore it” school of thought. But I don’t want my girl to feel helpless if she wanted to say something. She informed me that “saying something back wouldn’t fix anything, it would just make her the same as them”. This is a kid who legitimately sees the best in everyone she meets. She plays with everyone, will walk right up and strike up a conversation with anyone. She wakes up every day running full speed ahead.
Thanks, Selena, for being part of the SixDegrees.org team and connecting causes to your everyday activities.
Most people think of Valentine’s as a day to plan treats and sweets for the special people in our lives, so the thought of small children in a hospital during this time is enough to break your heart. Kyra Sedgwick and Kevin Bacon celebrated Valentine’s Day together spending time at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, trying to bring a little cheer to kids, families, and the outstanding nurses who care for them.
Kicking off Random Acts of Kindness Week, Kevin and Kyra delivered valentines made by children at nearby school specifically for the kids in the hospital. They also got to dabble with some crafts in making valentines along with children in the hospital.
We hope you will #Pledge2BeKind and make at least one random act of kindness this week. The Random Acts of Kindness Foundation has dozens of ideas on how kids, schools, and everyone else can make a big impact with just one little action.
SixDegrees.org is a nonprofit that helps musicians, actors, and other influencers surprise local causes in ways that align with personal or professional interests. From fishing to gaming to eating or shopping, we make it easy to do good by turning your everyday activities into an “epic charity tour.”
Kevin Bacon and The Bacon Brothers volunteered their time and demonstrated just how easy it is to do good while you’re eating, drinking, or just looking for an interesting way to explore a new town. In between shows during a 3-day stint in Alexandria, VA, SixDegrees.org facilitated surprise “drop-ins” on local charities and charitable businesses that go above and beyond in connecting people and building community. From donuts to 100-degree garden pop up performances, they made an impact and had a lot of fun.
CityBlossoms cultivates dozens of “kid-driven, kid-driven, community engaging, creative green spaces” across DC and consults other communities to do the same. With just a handful of employees and hundreds of volunteers, they are using gardening to educate and inspire children while bringing neighborhoods together in fascinating new ways.
Kevin Bacon started this epic charity tour by visiting William Ramsey Recreation Center in Alexandria in support of No Kid Hungry, a national campaign encouraging more funding (and availability of funds) to end childhood hunger.
Some media tell the story better than we do:
- NBC Washington – The Bacon Brothers Do Pop Up Show At A Community Garden in DC
- WUSA – Kevin Bacon supports No Kid Hungry efforts in Alexandria
- Alexandria Patch
- Washington Post – Kevin Bacon’s epic charity tour of Washington (and, yeah, he played ‘Footloose’)
- Politico – Kevin Bacon Dives Into Childhood Hunger Advocacy
- Washington Business Journals
- Brightest Young Things
- Edible DC
Special thanks to Christine Halsey for volunteering to capture some of these experienced on film, too!
SixDegrees.org connects people taking small actions on a local level with celebrity shout outs that can amplify their efforts. GivingTuesday is one of those amazing grassroots campaigns.
We have a day for giving thanks. We have two for getting deals. Now, we have #GivingTuesday, a global day dedicated to giving back. On Tuesday, December 1, 2015, charities, families, businesses, community centers, and students around the world will come together for one common purpose: to celebrate generosity and to give.
Need some inspiration? Here are just a few actions you can take to benefit causes today and through the rest of the season:
- Donate to or create a social fundraiser for any charity online at SixDegrees.org. Some of our favorites from recent days include the following:
Harlem Grown – Help elementary and middle school children in the middle of a Harlem food desert learn how to grow (and love to eat!) healthy fruits and vegetables on this incredible urban farm.
Share Our Strength – Support this campaign to end childhood hunger.
WQXR Instrument Drive – Help get a musical instrument into the hands of every New York City schoolkid. This grassroots drive rounded up, refurbished and distributed more than 3,000 donated instruments last year and is hoping to double that amount in 2016!
Billings Forge Community Works Kitchen – Kevin Bacon visited this great cafe while performing in Rear Window in Hartford. It’s a nonprofit social enterprise that provides employment opportunities to ex-offenders, homeless, and other people who face significant barriers. Even better, they’ve got some incredible farm-to-table food and coffee!
Veterans First Fly Fishing – This group of 100% volunteers teach veterans from all eras and conflicts fly tying, fly casting and fly fishing as a healthy and therapeutic recreational activity.
- Change your social media profile pics and covers and create posts that spread the word about #GivingTuesday. You can find a variety of tools at www.givingtuesday.org.
- Start a “pay-it-forward” chain at a local coffee shop. Visit suspendedcoffees.com for more ideas and a link to participating shops that are familiar with the concept.
- Order holiday gifts online at Thistle Farms and help this nonprofit that serves as a “sanctuary for healing for women survivors of abuse, addiction, trafficking and prostitution.” Candles, bath essentials, gift totes, holiday cards, and much more can make unique gifts for friends and family on your list while helping a cause at the same time. Folks in Nashville can even drop by their cafe to enjoy a great meal!
- Perform a Random Act of Kindness. Or better yet, donate to the nonprofit focused exclusively on promoting random acts!
The day before Thanksgiving, Kevin Bacon dropped in on Harlem Grown, a local nonprofit that educates youth on urban farming, sustainability, and nutrition by enabling them to grow, consume, and share fresh fruits and vegetables on a farm in the middle of the city.
He joined children, staff and other volunteers in composting and other garden projects during this surprise visit. He also announced a grant for the organization, along with an online fundraising challenge to the general public to join him in supporting Harlem Grown.
The mission of Harlem Grown is to inspire youth to live healthy and ambitious lives through mentorship and hands-on education in urban farming, sustainability, and nutrition. The charity serves at-risk youth living in communities with high poverty rates and high unemployment rates. Over 85% of families served are living at or below the poverty line. Almost half (46%) of the youth served are either overweight or obese and 80% live in single-parent households. Harlem Grown is an oasis in a food desert, where fast-food restaurants are four times as prevalent as the overall urban average, and access to affordable, healthy food is limited.
In addition to a rigorous rehearsal schedule, Kevin Bacon was performing in Rear Window on Hartford Stage 8 times a week. But that didn’t stop him from spending a few hours supporting local causes in between work activities. A highlight was surprising Ms. Mancone and Hartford Magnet Trinity College Academy with a $3000 grant to fund an out-of-town field trip Ms. Mancone organized for students who had never traveled before. See below for a few photos and check out news coverage to get the full scoop!
- NBC Connecticut
- WFSB Channel 3 Hartford
- Hartford Courant Story
- Hartford Courant (Photos)
- WNPR Connecticut
Talking Food and Social Justice with Public Allies
Lunch and Learning with Billings Forge Community Works
SixDegrees.org is connecting local businesses and charities across the country this holiday season, so every gift you buy gives twice! It’s called Shop For Good.
Throughout November and December, local businesses will offer “Shop For Good” days, during which they will give a portion of purchases to any of the 1,000,000+ schools and charities in the country each customer chooses! (we’ve got nifty technology to make this easy on everyone involved).
If you know a local business, encourage them to sign up to benefit your charity and/or any other charity customers choose!
Kevin Bacon delivered meals to Citymeals-on-Wheels and awarded the organization a $1000 grant from The American Egg Board, in honor of the 15,000+ volunteers it coordinates to serve more than 18,000 frail New York City seniors on a weekly basis.
Do you support a neighborhood organization fighting hunger in your community? Tell us about how the charity is building community while battling hunger and we could award it a $1000 grant, courtesy of The American Egg Board as well! Simply submit the cause through the SixDegrees.org website or tweet about it while mentioning @SixDegreesofKB and using #SixDegrees!
Most people can recall where they were, what they were doing, how the tragic events made them feel that morning. Many lost friends and family in a senseless act of terror. We remember those loved and those lost that day as well as the days since then. And we are honored to be part of the 911Day.org movement that pays tribute to those who fell as well as the heroes who came to our rescue.
We’re inspired by a group of now-teens born that day who are leading the way to make it a day of service and to show the world that hope and unity can shine through anywhere. We had a chance to volunteer alongside them at City Harvest in New York, just one of the many great places where 40 million Americans will do a good deed on September 11.
Please join them.
Seven-year-old Ethan bet Kevin Bacon six dollars he could eat the most ice cream in six seconds. At Give Kids The World Village, fun stuff like this happens all the time for kids with life-threatening illnesses.
Why six dollars, and why six seconds?
At SixDegrees.org, we know everyone in the world is connected to one another by six degrees or less. This includes kids like Ethan. Kevin, by the way, lost his bet, so he and Ethan donated their six dollars to Give Kids The World.
Now, it’s your turn to help this nonprofit resort for seriously ill kids and their families. Challenge a friend to the 6-second ice cream eating contest. The rules are simple: Whoever eats the most, wins. Loser donates $6 to Give Kids The World.
By participating, you’ll help Give Kids The World provide free, fantasy vacations to seriously ill children and their families.
Share your video using the hashtag #GKTWChallenge. You can donate at www.gktw.org/bacon.
You’ll be helping some awfully brave kids and their families enjoy the vacation of a lifetime.
To learn more about Give Kids The World, please visit: www.gktw.org
1.) We love that you guys did a pop-up performance and volunteer event for the SF Marin Food Bank in San Francisco on July 12! Please tell us all about it. How did it go? Can you tell us how it all came together?
The pop up show was a lot of fun. We got to play a quick acoustic show for the volunteers, giving them a short break from their hard work. After the set we did some volunteer work ourselves, packing food boxes on the assembly line. It was a lot of fun meeting and working alongside the vibrant people who do this regularly for their city. We’re always trying to remind people that a little love goes a long way on this world and [San Francisco radio station] KFOG helped give us the chance to give a little love back to a city that has supported us for so many years.
2.) We hear you guys have done several pop-up performances and drop-ins for different charities across the country. That’s amazing! Can you tell us more about some of the other ones you have done?
Last summer we played Austin, Texas’ festival “Austin City Limits”. The second weekend was canceled due to rain. We were all ready to go and so were thousands of festival goers, so we decided to play a show anyway, making the venue the parking lot of a local shelter there. We tweeted out to fans that admission cost any item the homeless night need. About 300+ people showed up with toilet paper, diapers, canned food, you name it! We’ve been doing pop up shows for years, but in that moment we realized how easy and beneficial it was to have those pop up shows at – or in support of – local charities. We’ve found that it’s a really simple, nearly effortless way to benefit the community, so why not?
3.) Why do you feel it’s so important to do these type of events for local charities?
I think artists, for better or worse, are held in a certain esteem by the public. Being in that public light allows you the opportunity to glorify or glamorize certain things. If there is even one teenager out there who thinks we’re cool cause we’re in a band, than I want to glorify humanitarianism and selflessness. Helping other people is cool; donating your time to charity reaches farther, wider and deeper than any good outfit or hip party ever will.
4.) What are some causes you guys are most passionate about?
There are so many! For starters, We believe that every person on earth should have food, water and shelter, so any charity that donates food or provides shelter – organizations like charitywater.com for example who help to provide and track clean water in third world countries – are all amazing. We also believe it’s important to keep art programs in school, as all levels of education contribute to a brighter future for all. We’ve played shows at multiple “relay for life” events too. Between the 7 of us, we feel passionately about a multitude of causes, which is why we try to get involved in helping out wherever and whenever possible.
5.) Our work at SixDegrees is all about supporting local, grassroots nonprofits. Can you tell us about some local charities you guys love, that many people may not be aware of?
There is this one charity we worked with in Kansas City called “Happy Bottoms” who are pretty great. They collect diapers for the homeless and underprivileged. It’s one of those innovative charities who are thinking outside the box of canned goods and providing a product most people don’t realize there’s an urgent and constant need for.
6.) We understand how artists’ schedules are tight and ever-changing, which can make it difficult to plan these type of events. What advice would you give to other artists or celebrities that may be interested in coordinating a drop-in with a local charity?
Just do it! Every city in the world has a demographic that needs LOVE, whether it’s the homeless, the hungry, or the sick. If you have some extra time in a city, find a local charity and get involved! With social media giving us the opportunity to reach out to our fan bases within minutes, we can coordinate amazing things! People WANT to help make the world a better place! Help them do that by giving them a reason to show up their local charity!
7.) We at Six Degrees believe that we are all connected in this world. So we’d love to play the Six Degrees game with you! We’ll name a public figure or celebrity and in 6 degrees or less, try and see how you are connected.
Since the World Cup just ended (which we were obsessed with) in 6 degrees or less, can you find a way you are connected to: Tim Howard (Team USA Goalie)?!
-Ok here we go! The producer of our first album dated spice girl, Mel B, who is (obviously) friends with Victoria Beckham who is married to David Beckham who played for Manchester United, a team that Tim Howard played for. BOOM!
What do good musicians do before sound check when they’re on tour? They raise awareness of good causes by surprising them with drop-ins facilitated by SixDegrees.org.
The Bacon Brothers are cooking up special shows in conjunction with their City Winery appearance on Tuesday, June 23. They start the day playing a song with students from the Washington Heights Expeditionary Learning School (WHEELS) using instruments donated through the WQXR Instrument Drive. You can join the festivities by following along via livestream at WQXR.org.
Even better, they’ve invited a talented 15-year-old to play his donated guitar on stage with them at City Winery at 8pm later tonight.
All of these activities are meant to kick off the 2016 instrument drive and to help raise the more than $600,000 necessary to collect, refurbish, and distribute over 6,000 instruments to 100 different schools across the five New York City Boroughs. It takes an average of $100 to get a donated instrument ready for students to use them. Please donate today!
Here’s what happened last year:
Generous music lovers donated more than 3,000 gently used musical instruments at drop off locations in New York City, Northern New Jersey, Westchester and Long Island.
Working with Sam Ash Music Stores and the Mr. Holland’s Opus Foundation, WQXR repaired the instruments and has distributed them to more than 95 deserving music programs in New York City Public Schools (and counting!).
They’re gearing up to double the number of instruments that go to music programs next year and they need your help to cover the costs of repairs and related supplies. Learn more about this great program on the WQXR website.
Spread the word on Twitter and Instagram using #GiveMusicNYC.
When SixDegrees.org saw all of the great charitable work Martina McBride’s Team Martina was doing on Twitter, it was a connection at first sight!
Several weeks later, the SixDegrees.org team checked the Bacon Brothers’ schedule and noticed they were performing in Nashville. “We thought, why don’t we give Team Martina a call and just see if Martina McBride will be around to do a drop-in with us,” said Dan McCabe, President of SixDegrees.org. And as it happens, she was!
Martina joined Kevin and Michael Bacon to surprise kids and families at the Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital in Nashville with a star-studded pizza party. Martina, Kevin and Michael visited and shared pizza and cake with almost 60 families with children who are critically ill—bringing lots of love, hope and laughter to the hospital.
Six Degrees Fact:
Although we originally connected via social media, unbeknownst to us, we were already connected through the Bacon Brothers–The Bacon Brothers had performed with Martina McBride in Los Angeles a few years ago where their performance met with a disaster. The Bacon Brothers wrote a song shortly after for Martina called Gray Green Eyes.
How can you make a positive impact on the people of Nepal, and the devastation they face, when you are thousands of miles away? Donate to the Nepal Quake Recovery Fund, managed by the Center for Disaster Philanthropy (CDP). CDP is an industry leader that provides in-depth analysis and funding vehicles to individual, foundation and corporate donors who want to maximize the impact of disaster-oriented donations. Among many other things, CDP enables you to donate in the immediate wake of a disaster (and beyond), and then collaborates with other nonprofit partners to distribute funding and support to organizations with in-country experience best suited to each stage of recovery. Learn more at http://disasterphilanthropy.org/cdp-nepal-earthquake-fund.
When young people mobilize to make their voices heard in tackling the world’s social and environmental problems, how can you not support them?
Kevin Bacon closed the National Youth Leadership Council’s conference plenary with a shout out in support of its Youth Advisory Council. This group of young people devised and developed a youth-driven Youth4Education campaign to inspire the leader in every young person to take charge of their own education, using service-learning as the means to bring change to their communities and beyond.
Take a look and sign the pledge to support them as well as youth in your community!
Thousands of people across the globe started the new year with a new kind of resolution. What will you do for others this year?
Food Day inspires Americans to change their diets and our food policies. Every October 24, thousands of events all around the country bring Americans together to celebrate and enjoy real food and to push for improved food policies.
On November 19th, Kevin Bacon and Kyra Sedgwick were joined by chefs, celebrities, and volunteers to help end hunger this holiday season with the Food Bank NYC.Kevin and Kyra found some time to take these fun photos. We asked our community to add fun caption! Be sure to have your say in it too!
Food Day inspires Americans to change their diets and our food policies. Every October 24, thousands of events all around the country bring Americans together to celebrate and enjoy real food and to push for improved food policies. October 24 is a day to resolve to make changes in our own diets and to take action to solve food-related problems in our communities at the local, state, and national level.
While in Charlotte, on their day off, the Bacon Brothers decided to surprise families and volunteers at the Ronald McDonald House of Charlotte (RMH of Charlotte) with a pop-up performance. They heard about RMH of Charlotte when a volunteer there sent a shout out to SixDegrees.org and put the organization on the map for a drop-in or shout out. The timing worked out perfectly with The Bacon Brothers’ tours—they pulled in to town and drove right up to the house for an unplugged show.
Getting Footloose for the Ronald McDonald House
More about the Ronald McDonald House of Charlotte
The primary goal at the Ronald McDonald House of Charlotte is to provide families a safe, comfortable and supportive environment while their children receive medical treatment at nearby medical facilities. Volunteers manage every aspect of daily House operation, including preparing dinner 365 nights a year, setting up guest rooms, cleaning the House, daily family activities, therapy dogs and more. Nearly 7,000 volunteers come through the House each year to help them fulfill their mission. If you would like to support this incredible organization, visit http://www.rmhofcharlotte.org/how-you-can-help.
On Friday, August 1, the Bacon Brothers were able to “pay it back” to someone who has been paying it forward since 2011. Fourteen-year-old Anna Clark started Guitars 4 Gifts (G4G) to give guitars to underprivileged youth through established organizations in the Nashville area. Since the organization started, Anna has provided almost 40 guitars in an effort to help kids find their passion for music and develop musical skills.
Kevin Bacon and the Bacon Brothers heard about her work through SixDegrees.org and a mutual connection at Kids On Stage Summer Academy, an organization where G4G places guitars. Originally the Bacon Brothers were going to give her a backstage pass, but after jumping on a phone call with the Bacon Brothers’ official guitar company, Taylor Guitars offered to donate one of their guitars to Anna. So, with a backstage pass given to her by Kids On Stage, Anna walked in to meet Kevin and Michael Bacon as well as her new Taylor Guitar.
Anna came up with the idea to give guitars to underprivileged kids when she was including toys in a Christmas basket for her church just like she did every year. But this particular year, she found it much harder to shop for people her own age. Since she enjoyed playing guitar so much, she decided she wanted to give kids something that she loved—their very own guitar. With a nudge from her dad to give guitars all year round, G4G was born.
One of Anna’s favorite stories was when G4G gave a guitar to a little boy around 5 or 6 years old through Kids On Stage. “Afterwards, my mom and I were talking to his friend’s mom, who had gotten him involved in Kids on Stage,” said Anna. “She was crying and telling us how much he loved music, but how he couldn’t afford an instrument.” Anna hopes that the guitars given to people help them to believe in themselves.
Want to play your own part and pay it forward? Check out Guitars 4 Gifts website and donate.
When Rachel Weinstein, Operation Backpack® Founder, wrote a letter to actor and musician Kevin Bacon asking if he could attend their kick-off event, she never dreamed it would lead to the inspiring outpouring of support for Volunteers of America-Greater New York’s annual drive that it did. Every year, in an effort to break the cycles of homelessness and poverty, Operation Backpack provides new backpacks filled with grade-specific school supplies to children living in New York City’s homeless and domestic violence shelters. Last year, VOA-Greater New York responded to more than 16,000 backpack requests. This year they need to respond to the almost 19,000 requests they’ve already received to ensure that every child living in a NYC homeless shelter is ready for his or her first day of school.
Originally planning a fundraising event, the group quickly developed ideas around a video and a CrowdRise campaign while in conversations with SixDegrees.org. From the director who wrote the script, to the equipment, technical assistance, studio location, filmmakers and especially Kevin Bacon, the entire community came together to donate its time to VOA-Greater New York.
“It’s amazing how people can rally together for a cause they hold close to their heart,” said Rachel, VP/Chief Development & Communications Officer at VOA-Greater New York. “This video was made thanks to the generosity of a broad community. I was shocked when I found out that Kevin Bacon flew to New York City in the middle of his Bacon Brothers tour just to shoot our video and greet our guests. It means a great deal to us.”
The video already has almost 165,000 views, in large part thanks to Upworthy’s post and also social media shares from celebrities such as Kevin Bacon and actress Paige Davis (best known for TLC’s Trading Spaces). The Operation Backpack campaign has already attracted more than 700 new donors through the CrowdRise Campaign. VOA has raised $148,000 so far (though they need $440,000) and received donations from just about every state and from faraway lands including Hong Kong, Great Britain and Costa Rica.
“We just loved the idea of everyone coming together,” said Rachel. “In fact, it started with people joining together for one cause, is funded by people all over the world who care, and even the last part of the video is representative of the community coming together. When Kevin Bacon appears at the end as himself, the crowd in the scene includes the NYC Commissioner for the Department of Homeless Services, some of our donors, and the great people who volunteered their time to help with the video. I believe that Kevin Bacon would be pleased… how everyone is connected.”
VOA-Greater New York still needs to raise almost $300,000, so please visit their site and give a little to help break the cycle of poverty and homelessness.
You can help Atlantic City relief too. It will take years to recover from Sandy.
Kevin Bacon performed not only at the Ocean City Music Pier on July 21 in Ocean City, New Jersey with his band Bacon Brothers, but also dropped-in at a worthy cause nearby. After hearing that adult and teen volunteers would be gathering in Atlantic City to help with Hurricane Sandy recovery, Kevin Bacon decided to bring lunch to these dedicated do-gooders. As it happens, the lunch he delivered is from nationally renowned White House Sub Shop in Atlantic City, a restaurant that Hurricane Sandy had wiped out but reopened in January, 2013.
“We often forget that it takes years for a town to rebuild and recover after natural disasters like Hurricane Sandy,” said Kevin Bacon. “That’s why I wanted to meet these volunteers who continue to give their time to help rebuild Atlantic City.”
The Atlantic City Long Term Recovery Group (ACLTRG) is helping residents of Atlantic City recover from the devastation of Hurricane Sandy. The mission is to respond to residents’ needs, rebuild homes and restore hope. At this time, 90 homes have been completed by the Atlantic City Long Term Recovery Group.
“It has been nearly two years and yet there are families in Atlantic City who still have not recovered form Hurricane Sandy. This is why it is so meaningful for individuals like Kevin Bacon to use their celebrity to draw attention to the continued need of the victims,” said Dr. Clarence Alston, Executive Director of ACLTRG. “This occasion also sheds light on the sacrifice of disaster workers and volunteers. The ACLTRG is grateful to have caring people like Kevin Bacon join in the recovery effort.”
Volunteers have come from all over the United States to assist with the repairs and rebuilds for homeowners. There is still a current influx of volunteers that have helped and continue to do so, even on a local level. The two groups volunteering today include a group of teens from Atlantic County Institute of Technology (a local high school) and their teacher, all of whom are working with ACLTRG for the entire month of July and a group of teens and adults from the Congregational Church of Eastford in Eastford, CT.
The Bacon Brothers and Kevin Bacon continue to drop-in for good causes throughout their tour this summer. When Sofi’s Crepes in Annapolis offered a 100% donation for every “KEVIN BACON” Crepe purchase during the Bacon Brothers stop in Annapolis, Kevin Bacon dropped in to check them out. What’s even better, customers (and Kevin) were able to designate any charity in the country to receive their donation. It’s good to see local business giving back!
Actors from Detour Company Theatre in Scottsdale, Arizona touched our hearts with a compelling YouTube invitation they made (below) for Kevin Bacon to see their performance of Footloose. Kevin was in Miami as part of a Bacon Brothers performance at the Miccosukee Tribe’s annual Gator Jam benefit, but with the help of the Internet, he still found a way to make an appearance. And he rallied dozens of kids, parents and other volunteers to be part of a Footloose flash mob too! Please join us in spreading the word about the trailblazing work this nonprofit is doing to give people with disabilities the opportunity to experience and share the arts as actors and performers. Learn more or donate online at detourcompanytheatre.org.
Message from The Bacon Brothers to Detour Company Theatre:
Live Footloose Dedication to Detour Company Theatre:
Video Invitation to Kevin Bacon from Detour Company Theatre:
More than 2,000 students at UNC Chapel Hill do an incredible job dancing all night to raise funds for North Carolina Children’s Hospital. When they heard Kevin Bacon might be on The Tonight Show at the same time, they snapped their best Footloose and took to Twitter to try and get a shout out from Kevin Bacon. Although he was busy working on his own rendition of Footloose, he took a break backstage to wish dancers luck. His shout out gave a late night boost of energy to a gym full of dancers.
Take a look at Kevin’s message.
When organizers of Give Day Tampa Bay realized that Kevin Bacon would be in town for a lecture at University of South Florida, they launched #OperationBacon, a social-media campaign (with a nifty logo) to reel him to a nonprofit training session.
Kevin surprised dozens of nonprofit leaders by dropping in under the guise of a “guest instructor.”
Kevin Bacon and SixDegrees.org will be giving $1000 to the nonprofit that gets the most donors by 6am during the giving day, May 6. In addition, one donor who has also shared the campaign with friends via social media will win the “Bring Home the Bacon” prize, a personal video thank you from Kevin.
Kevin Bacon snaps the world’s biggest social cause selfie during a drop-in to the Rock Your Camo 5K for Women Veterans.
Geena Davis dropped in on 2nd Graders at Winship Elementary School in Brighton, MA to speak about the roles of women in the media and share an educational program that teaches children to challenge gender stereotypes.
Carolyn Malachi mentors dancers of the Taratibu Youth Association, a group she was part of as a child. She also chose Taratibu Youth Association to be in her music video for the electro-pop song, “Free Your Mind”.
“Lending my voice to grassroots non-profit organizations allows me to play an active, purposeful role in the global community. I believe in the power of music to unite and inspire people. In those united moments, facilitated by music, we are blessed with opportunities to understand each other.” – Carolyn Malachi
Lawrence coordinated some football drills and explained how important exercise is to children from the area, as part of the 30th Annual Circle City Classic’s football camp held at the Colts training facility.
“My mother told me that if you touch one life, then your living wasn’t in vain. Giving back is like planting a seed, so what I do is a manifestation of what others have done for me along the way. I’m merely re-sowing the same seed in hopes to positively affect the people I encounter. If what I’ve said or done sparks one change they will no doubt pay it forward. That’s what it’s about! “ -Lawrence Sidbury