Stars Align for Oxfam America

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Felicity Huffman, Minnie Driver, Colin Firth and others voice support for 'Unwrapped' alternative gift catalog.

Several marquee film and TV stars are voicing their support this holiday season for Oxfam America's ongoing work around the world, and especially for its unique online gift-giving program available at http://www.OxfamAmericaUnwrapped.com.

"It's an amazing organization," said actress Felicity Huffman at a recent Beverly Hills benefit for Oxfam. "It's been going on for 35 years. Oxfam America not only fights hunger, poverty and social injustice, but they refuse to take any money from the government, which means they are free agents, and they can (assess) situation needs -- not what is prescribed by the government."    

"Oxfam America Unwrapped is something you do online," she added. "They have great Christmas cards and great presents and you can support the organization and also get your Christmas shopping done."

Academy Award nominee Minnie Driver is also a strong Oxfam supporter who recently appeared on "The Ellen DeGeneres Show" bearing the gift of a live, fully-grown camel for Ellen.

"Why give a revolting sweater to your mum or your dad this holiday season, when you can give them a camel; a lovely, hissing, biting, spitting camel; that will do wonderful stuff, for sub-Saharan Africa mostly."

"I suppose what attracts me to Oxfam is that I trust them," said British actor Colin Firth. "I have been helping [Oxfam] out a little bit for about five or six years now. Oxfam is a household name in England. You grow up with Oxfam. It's a very, very big fixture in life. Basically, they're not a charity in the conventional sense of the word; this is not just about raising money and throwing it at problems. It's about actually trying to raise the awareness that we are very much connected with some of the stuff that goes on currently in far-away places."

"I'm very excited about Oxfam America Unwrapped," said actress Kristin Davis who recently toured South Africa with Oxfam. "It's what I've asked for, for Christmas. I've told everyone I know about it, and I think it's a great program. There are water jugs in the online catalog for $18, which seems to us like 'Oh, who would want to send a water jug' but this actually makes a huge difference in these people's lives…it's shocking but it's true."

The 36 gifts from Oxfam's online catalog are symbolic and gift prices reflect a suggested, tax-deductible donation to Oxfam America's work. Rather than a specific item, gift recipients receive a colorful gift card that illustrates the purchase made in his/her name, with a personalized message.

To listen to what Colin Firth said about Oxfam, please visit http://oxfamamerica.cachefly.net/esquire/colin_firth.mp3 and download the audio file.

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Paulette Song
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