Seth Rogen is best known for his role in slapstick comedies like “Knocked Up” and “Superbad.” But there’s another side to the actor, one that is fighting for Alzheimer’s awareness and raising funding for Alzheimer’s research.
As Rogen watches his mother-in-law battle with the disease, he is raising funds and awareness through his organization “Hilarity for Charity.” Learn more about the organization and how it is bringing serious attention to Alzheimer’s.
Seth Rogen’s Hilarity for Charity
Hilarity for Charity (HFC) is an organization led by Seth Rogen and his wife, Lauren Miller, to fight Alzheimer’s, the disease that plagues his mother in-law. Using his celebrity status and far reaching platform, Rogen and his team strive to raise Alzheimer’s awareness among the millennial generation.
The organization sponsors an annual event called the Los Angeles Variety Show and since the event began three years ago, HFC has raised over $1.7 million for Alzheimer’s. Past performers include Paul Rudd, Bruno Mars, Tenacious D, Patton Oswalt, Samuel L. Jackson and The Backstreet Boys, to name a few. This year’s event, James Franco’s Bar Mitzvah at the Fourth Annual Variety Show, will be held on October 17, 2015 and features Miley Cyrus.
Last year, HFC expanded their reach by launching HFC U to connect with universities and encourages college organizations to host their own HFC event. The organizations compete with each other and the top fundraiser earns a coveted prize. The most recent prize, awarded to Pi Kappa Alpha and Alpha Chi Omega at the University of Vermont, was a live commentary screening of Superbad with Seth Rogen and Chris Mintz-Plasse. The nationwide program has over 230 schools participating and has raised over $200,000.
Hilarity for Charity Brings Serious Attention to Alzheimer’s
There’s no question that Hilarity for Charity is making a financial impact in the fight against Alzheimer’s. However, it is arguably their impact on social awareness that is making the biggest contribution.
The money raised from HFC goes to care, support and raise awareness and research. Hilarity for Charity awards in-home care grants throughout the Unites States and Canada to allow more people to stay at home longer. As of 2015, HFC has given over 8,000 hours of respite care to Alzheimer’s and dementia caregivers.
Another goral is to “mobilize a new generation of Alzheimer’s advocates while supporting young people who are currently affected by the disease.” To do this, HFC provides support and awareness programs for people under 40 fighting Alzheimer’s. A main component of awareness has been the the release of a feature length film, “This is Alzheimer’s” which documents the stories of three different families navigating their way through the disease.
Finally, HFC supports research efforts through the Alzheimer’s Association’s International Research Grant Program. Of these grants, HFC has supported grants focused on early onset Alzheimer’s.
How Rogen Continues to Bring Awareness to Alzheimer’s
As of August 2016, Seth Rogen and wife, Lauren Miller, have raised over $5 million for Alzheimer’s research. In a recent interview with Time Magazine, Rogen and Miller open up about the more personal side of their charity.
Miller said that they often receive thank you notes from their grant recipients. She remembers one line from one of the thank you notes, which was: “Thank you for the chance to join humanity again.” She said it’s “amazing and wonderful that we get to do that.” Miller goes on to tell Time that starting the charity was hard at first to be constantly thinking about her mother’s illness. She says that has all changed.
“But now we’ve helped so many people, and I’ve gotten to see such a bright side of something that had such a dark side. Even when something is so bad, you can find some good in it. Doing an event is a great way to make money, and it’s our way of bringing some happiness and some light to something that is sad.”
Rogen said that it was around the time he was starting to feel a social responsibility that his mother-in-law was diagnosed. He credits his wife with encouraging him to speak out for increased funding for Alzheimer’s research. “It really was a moment where this was happening in my personal life, and at the same time, I was like, ‘I could actually really help bring attention to this thing.’ But it was mostly Lauren that encouraged me to do this. I probably wouldn’t have done it on my own.”
Rogen continue to use his celebrity platform to speak out on social issues like equal pay and gay rights in a new series of Bud Light commercials. He says, “That was their pitch — they wanted to do a beer campaign that has a socially progressive commentary to it. It was shocking. But I strongly believed in the things that they were promoting — and I drink beer. I was shocked, honestly, that they did it.”
To learn more about HFC and to learn how you can become involved in their fundraising and awareness efforts visit: www.hilarityforcharity.org