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Before Golden Globes Air, Show Focuses On Charity Awareness

Nuha Abujaber |
January 14, 2012 | 2:22 p.m. PST

Staff Contributor

The Golden Globes air Sunday at 8 EST on NBC (NBC)
The Golden Globes air Sunday at 8 EST on NBC (NBC)
The flurry of events surrounding this Sunday’s Golden Globes might look like all glitz and glamour, but there's a charitable side as well.

Prior to the Jan. 15 awards ceremony, hosted by the Hollywood Foreign Press Assn. and held at the Beverly Hilton Hotel, are two activities intent on spreading the wealth. The first is the Golden Globes Gift Lounge hosted by GBK. The second event is the Awards Gifting Suite organized by Secret Room Events. While providing interviews and photo ops along with product demonstrations, the events also blend in charity showcasing.

The events, which take place at the posh L'Ermitage and SLS hotel at Beverly Hills, are primarily branding opportunities for companies looking to launch new lines, rehabilitate old products and keep healthy lines ahead of the competition by facilitating celebrity patronage.

 "It's the gifting suite for the Golden Globes presenters and hosts, where they come in to get trips to St. Martin all inclusive, and everything from shoes to skincare to baby wear," said Rita Branch, co-owner of Secret Room Events, of her involvement.

But before the gifts are handed out, the sponsors try to raise awareness of social issues by showcasing various charities. 

"We always want people around Hollywood to get to know about them," said Branch.

Secret Room Event is giving exposure to Gobble Gobble Give, a charity started 13 years ago by Barry Walker that now feeds about 6,000 homeless people during Thanksgiving.

"It's a chance for people to give back I think, there are a lot of people here that are enjoying wealth and happiness, and it's always good to remember that there are people out there that could use a little love," said Walker.

Anti-bullying is a recurring issue endorsed by celebrities and is the focus of the Gift Lounge presentation by Stop Bullying Now, founded by celebrity consultant Raffles Van Exel. Its initiative is titled "Hear No Evil. See No Evil, Speak No Evil," a message provided to families that includes ways to address the occurrence of bullying.

"We are finally introducing a mascot, who stands in for all the bullying campaigns," said Van Exel. "Miles the Monkey is now the official Mascot for Stop Bullying Now! And we have teamed up with the George Lopez Foundation, StopBullying.Org and many more. It's a movement in the making."

So when the 325 feet of red carpet -- longer than a football field - are unfurled the night of the Golden Globes, the ballroom outfitted with 8,000 square feet of blue carpet, the LED fixture equipped with 5,000 blue bulbs, and the 9,000 champagne glasses arrayed for the attendees, many of them, fresh from the charity displays, will be able to celebrate in good conscience.

Reach writer Nuha Abujaber here

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