Thursday, August 6, 2009

REPORT: Daytime Gives Back: New York

Susan Lucci, Kelly Manaco, Anthony Geary and other daytime stars traveled to Kenya in July as part of "Daytime Gives Back," a joint effort between the Daytime Emmys and Feed the Children, an international, non-profit relief organization that supports more than 100,000 children in Kenya’s slums. The three popular soap actors documented their journey with their own cameras on the trip and ALL MY CHILDREN will incorporate Lucci's trip as part of a story for Erica Kane. Some of the footage they shoot while over there will air as a "Daytime Gives Back" segment during the Daytime Entertainment Emmy Awards, airing Sunday, August 30th at 8:00p.m. ET/PT on the CW Television Network.

On Thursday, Lucci and another group of celebrities joined Feed the Children founders Larry and Frances Jones once again, this time in New York City for "Daytime Gives Back: New York." With the help of Kmart, actors from the New York soaps and other celebrities handed out school supplies and food to families in Harlem outside the Northside Community Center. Among the stars who were in attendance were Van Hansis, Julie Pinson, Jon Lindstrom and Marnie Schulenburg from AS THE WORLD TURNS, Brandon Buddy and Jason Tam from ONE LIFE TO LIVE, and Dr. Loretta Long and Alan Muraoka from SESAME STREET. Montel Williams was also on hand and received a lot of support from the crowd.

It was a wonderful event to witness and definitely an eye opener. There was a long line of parents and children looped well around the block and some had been waiting for several hours before we arrived. It was obvious that everyone who came through the line and were handed the supplies were incredibly graetful for the efforts of Feed the Children. One standout moment for me was when the sweetest little girl received a new backpack and was so excited she started pulling on her mother's shirt saying, "Mommy, Mommy, look at this. This is so cool." Similar reactions happened several more times during the event leaving everyone involved with a huge sense of accomplishment and a feeling they were really making an important contribution.

It was a fairly cool morning and evening in New York City but the sun decided to come out while the actors were working very hard moving boxes and passing out supplies. I was very impressed at how hard some of these people worked to keep things moving and they even stayed a bit longer than originally planned. Kudos to everyone involved.

Of course this is just one day in one area and there is much more to be done for many worthy causes around the world. But it certainly made me feel incredibly appreciative of the life I have and the opportunities I have received and a sense of obligation to give back.

To find out more about Feed the Children, visit their website at

- PHOTOS: Daytime Gives Back: New York
- VIDEO: Daytime Gives Back: New York

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