Jo Brand has been an active Crisis supporter since 2009. Amongst other things, she has hosted Crisis Square Mile Run and Midwinter Swim, performed stand-up comedy for Crisis at Christmas and in 2013 was the face of Crisis Christmas Party which raised over £100,000. In 2016, Jo launched the BBC Lifeline Appeal for Crisis on primetime TV and in 2017 she appeared with Joe Lycett in our 50th Anniversary film, written and directed by David Schneider.
Jonathan has been a close supporter of Crisis in more ways than one. Living just a few streets from our London Skylight and head office, he has popped in to discuss ideas and attend events at the Crisis cafe, and has donated many valuable items to Crisis shops. Jonathan has sung with the Choir in Crisis Skylight classes and at carol services. This Christmas, he performed a reading from Shirley Valentine at a Christmas centre event curated by Felix Buxton of Basement Jaxx.
Alastair first supported Crisis in 2009, when he presented a BBC Lifeline film on our behalf. Since then, he has presided over numerous events and projects, most recently for News 50, our 50th anniversary steering group of news journalists, which he stewarded alongside Jeremy Paxman. Alastair supports Crisis at every possible opportunity, whether promoting Crisis at Christmas on ITV’s website or asking Gary Lineker to persuade Walkers Crisps to supply a consignment of snacks when Crisis at Christmas supplies had run out.
Former BBC Newsnight presenter Jeremy Paxman is a long term supporter of Crisis and has run philosophy workshops for our clients, delivered a Christmas reading at Southwark Cathedral, launched the Square Mile Run and served tea to guests at Crisis at Christmas, even volunteering his family one year when he was unable to come. Most recently, he chaired News 50, our 50th anniversary steering group of news journalists, which he stewarded alongside Alastair Stewart.
Al Doyle, singer and instrumentalist with critically acclaimed and multi-award-winning bands Hot Chip and LCD Soundsystem, first supported Crisis when Hot Chip played Crisis Hidden Gigs in May 2009. More recently, in 2016, Al appeared at Common People Prom for Crisis, and that same year led a full term’s course in digital music for Crisis clients at Skylight London.
Sir Ian McKellen’s support for Crisis has been phenomenal. Narrating our Crisis at Christmas TV and Radio Appeals for the past three years, he has helped to raise millions for the charity. He also brings Christmas cheer to our guests by visiting rough sleepers' centres each Boxing Day. And last Christmas he hosted a special Crisis dinner at his very own riverside pub in Limehouse.
Chris Martin has volunteered for Crisis for a staggering 20 years. And with Coldplay, he performed in both Liverpool and Newcastle as part of the Crisis Hidden Gigs series. Most recently, at Crisis at Christmas 2016, guests and volunteers at our West London centre were treated to a surprise acoustic set by Chris and our Guest Kevin.
Legendary Hollywood actor Richard Gere visited Crisis in March 2016 to meet with clients who have been supported by Crisis in rebuilding their lives. He also heard from Chief Executive Jon Sparkes about the charity’s campaigning work to end homelessness for good.
Clients attended the premiere of Gere’s latest film, Time Out of Mind and a percentage of the proceeds from the film were donated to Crisis.
Ellie Goulding joined Crisis clients for a music workshop in July 2015, sharing her thoughts on songwriting, and answering questions about singing techniques and how she prepares for gigs. She also met with Crisis chief executive Jon Sparkes to discuss Crisis’ campaign to end homelessness.
Since then, Ellie has volunteered at Crisis at Christmas 2015 and 2016, as well as raising awareness of Crisis’ work through her substantial social media following.
World heavyweight champion boxer Anthony Joshua wore Crisis’ name proudly on his kit when he beat Dillian Whyte at his O2 fight in December 2015.
Following the fight, Anthony joined us at one of our Crisis at Christmas centres, leading 25 guests in a boxing lesson and donating boxing kit to Crisis for all of the students. Inspired by this event, Crisis has started its own boxing class at Crisis Skylight London.
Ed Sheeran’s breakthrough song ‘The A-Team’ was based on his experience of volunteering at Crisis at Christmas. Ed has led workshops with clients in Newcastle and London and encouraged thousands to support Crisis’ ‘No Going Home’ campaign, ensuring that plans to stop under 25s from claiming housing benefit were dropped. Ed also backed Crisis’ No One Turned Away campaign, calling for every homeless person who approaches their council to get the help they need.