On Tuesday April 24, Oxfam will launch its biggest ever celebrity and public auction to help raise money for its Â£5 million appeal for Darfur and Chad.
A host of stars from international pop legend Elton John, Oscar-winning actress Dame Helen Mirren, acclaimed artist Tracey Emin, Coldplay’s frontman Chris Martin, and actress Sienna Miller have donated treasured possessions, as well as singer Corinne Bailey Rae and Damon Albarn’s Gorillaz.
The celebrity auction is part of Oxfam’s appeal for Darfur and Chad, which was launched on April 16 and has already raised Â£750,000. It is hoped that the 10-day celebrity auction will generate at least Â£500,000 more. The public can also join the stars by offering their own valuable items like books, clothes and antiques with ebay for charity to raise funds for Oxfam’s lifesaving work in Darfur and Chad.
Some four million people in Darfur are dependent on humanitarian aid â€“ with more than 2 million having been forced to leave their homes. Aid agencies are facing unprecedented difficulties in reaching those in need and estimate that one million are struggling without any aid at all.
Fans will be able to bid for a signed script of this year’s No-1 film The Queen, Elton John’s tailor-made Donatella Versace suit – which he wore to his White Tie and Tiara Ball – a piece of Tracey Emin artwork or a black Dolce & Gabanna jacket worn by Chris Martin during Coldplay’s Rush of Blood To The Head tour.
The red dress worn by Corinne Bailey Rae in the video of her first hit â€œPut Your Records Onâ€ has been donated, along with a limited-edition signed gorillaz print and a pair of gold-coloured designer shoes signed by actress Sienna Miller. Veteran war photographer Don McCullen has donated two photographs â€“ one signed â€“ which he took of the humanitarian crisis as part of Oxfam’s appeal.
Elton John said: â€œTry to imagine living in a tiny shelter made out of straw, dry branches and plastic sheeting with the sun baking down on you at 45 degrees. For most of us that’s beyond imagination. I’m delighted to donate this suit that was custom made by Donatella Versace for me to wear to the White Tie and Tiara Ball in 2000 and hope it raises lots of cash for the people of Darfur who have already suffered too much.
â€œRight now there are 2 million people living in camps in Darfur and on the border with Chad. Oxfam is helping 500,000 people providing basic sanitation and clean drinking water but to reach more people they need our help.â€
Ten of Oxfam’s award-winning buckets with taps will be available for Â£50, with each bucket sold online representing 20 more which could be funded in Chad and Darfur.
Oxfam will be adding more items to the site, including:
Â· The back of the chair used and signed by Bill Nighy on the set of The Pirates of the Caribbean
Â· A guitar signed by rock band The Kooks
Â· One pair of underpants signed by band Razorlight
Â· Signed photographs of pop star Jamelia
Â· Concert tickets to see Jon Bon Jovi and Justin Timberlake.
Jamelia described the situation in Darfur as â€œdesperateâ€.
â€œAs a mother I can’t imagine how any parent can cope looking after their children in such appalling conditions,â€ she said. â€œI hope donating these pictures I did for Oxfam a few years ago will raise as much cash as possible to support the very immediate needs of the people in Darfur.â€
You can find the Oxfam auctions in The Oxfam eBay shop.