by Morayo Bakare
Despite the freezing temperatures during Valentine’s Day weekend, nothing stopped fashion-lovers and show-goers from huddling in Lincoln Center to see Supermodel Naomi Campbell’s runway show. Her annual charity catwalk, Fashion for Relief, has organized fashion shows to benefit victims of various tragedies, such as those affected by Hurricane Katrina and the earthquake in Haiti. Founded in 2005, the organization has branched out to address a number of humanitarian needs. As a result, it has raised over four and a half million pounds, or over seven million dollars.
This year, the supermodel tapped designers, models and celebrities for the show to raise money for the fight against Ebola. Lincoln Center was filled with viewers anxiously waiting to see garments donated by Diane Von Furstenburg, Emilio Pucci, Marc Jacobs, Givenchy, Alexander McQueen and more. Campbell and many other associates modeled for the line. Some of those who walked the show were NeNe Leakes, Mary J. Blige, Quincy, Tyson Beckford, Paris Hilton, Kelly Osbourne, and Brad Goreski.
Not only did the celebrity-filled catwalk showcase donated pieces from famous fashion houses, but there was also a live auction with the donated items after the show in order to raise money for Disaster Emergency Committee, Ebola Crisis Appeal and the Ebola Survival Fund. The Disaster Emergency Committee, or DEC, brings leading United Kingdom aid charities together in times of crises. The Ebola Crisis Appeal is one of the appeals DEC has started to stop the spread of the disease and support those affected by the outbreak in western Africa. The Ebola Survival Fund plans on using its donations to support a coalition of community organizations in Liberia and Sierra Leone to complement the efforts of larger-scale programs.
As a frequent traveler to Kenya, where the supermodel has a home and frequently works with orphanages, Naomi feels a close tie to the cause and hopes to educate others about Ebola as well. In the past, Fashion for Relief has received donations from some of fashion and Hollywood’s biggest names including Kate Moss, Beyonce, Jane Fonda, Karolina Kurkova and more in order to raise funds for disaster relief projects. Naomi Campbell will stage another Fashion for Relief runway show and open London Fashion Week. This show will also be used to raise money for the Ebola crisis.