Leonardo DiCaprio’s gala raised $40 million for the environment

Leonardo DiCaprio’s gala raised $40 million for the environment

It is always great when celebrities, the people we look up to as role models, put their money towards the betterment of our planet. One of these celebrities recently made a huge impact — Leonardo DiCaprio’s gala raised $40 million for the environment.

The Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation (LDF) held its annual fundraising gala in St. Tropez, which was hosted by Foundation Chairman Leonardo DiCaprio and LDF Global Fundraising Chairman Milutin Gatsby. The LDF is dedicated to protecting the Earth’s last wild places and saving the environment.

Leonardo DiCaprio opened the gala with the following speech:

Tonight’s event is about supporting LDFs efforts to protect key species like the tiger, rhino, shark, and mountain gorilla by working with governments to conserve the jungles, coral reefs and forests they call home. By focusing on protecting these critically-endangered iconic species is almost like setting up a worldwide network of Noahs arks. We’ve decimated our forests, wildlands, polluted and over fished our rivers and oceans; all the key ecosystems that not only serve as a home to our planet’s biodiversity, but also make life here for us possible. I’m incredibly proud to be part of a night that will allow us to do so much to protect the planet.”

The event featured a live auction, where Leonardo offered some personal items for bid, such as his own Rolex watch, and a few art pieces from his collection, including an Andy Warhol.

The gala also included a surprise performance by Elton John, who sang many of his legendary hits. Grammy award-winning singer John Legend also performed.

According to DiCaprio’s website:

DiCaprio is also a leading environment activist, and serves as Chairman of the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation (“LDF”). He was recently designated as the United Nations Messenger of Peace for Climate Change and received the 2014 Clinton Global Citizen Award for his work to protect the environment and endangered species. In addition to founding LDF in 1998, DiCaprio also serves on the board of several environmental organizations, including: World Wildlife Fund, Natural Resources Defense Council, National Geographic’s Pristine Seas, the funders’ collaborative Oceans 5, and International Fund for Animal Welfare.”

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1. “2nd Annual LDF Gala Raises over $40 Million : Leonardo DiCaprio.” Leonardo DiCaprio. Leonardo DiCaprio, n.d. Web. 27 July 2015.
2. “Leonardo DiCaprio’s Star-studded Gala Raises $40M for Environment.” CBSNews. CBS Interactive, n.d. Web. 27 July 2015.

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