'Extreme Makeover: Home Edition' salutes veterans
LOS ANGELES (AP) — "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition" will salute military families in a Veterans Day fundraising special featuring stars including Jewel, Whoopi Goldberg and Robin Williams.
The hourlong ABC special, airing 8 p.m. EST on Nov. 11, will focus on issues faced by veterans and highlight the skills they can bring to the workforce and their communities, ABC and the charitable Entertainment Industry Foundation said Wednesday.
Jewel, who is co-hosting the special with Ty Pennington of "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition," also will sing.
"We want everyone to pitch in," she said in a statement. "We don't want the veterans to feel forgotten. Through their struggles, illness, post-traumatic stress disorder and a tough economy, we're here to let them know they're still supported."
Celebrities will ask viewers to donate by phone and online to groups that support military veterans. Those scheduled to take part include George Lopez, J.R. Martinez, Rachael Ray, Sherri Shepherd and Major League Baseball players Daniel Murphy, Shane Victorino and Clay Buchholz.
"It's important that the people who are watching and the people who may not have a lot themselves hear the clarion call. And if even if they give $5, they have done something to help," said Goldberg, who added that as the longtime co-host of Comic Relief she saw how generous people could be.
"Kids went in their pockets, people broke their piggy banks and they gave what they could to make someone else's life better. What's better than that? That's America," said the actress and co-host of "The View."
Contributions from the special subtitled, "Rise and Honor," will go to the Fisher House Foundation, Hire Heroes USA, Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund, USO, Volunteers of America and Welcome Back Veterans.
Besides coping with emotional and physical wounds, veterans from the Iraq and Afghanistan wars face an unemployment rate significantly higher than the national average, the foundation and ABC noted.
The special also will look back at episodes of "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition" that helped military families in need and the many volunteers from the armed forces who took part in rebuilding houses.
"Working with veterans is one of the most rewarding things about my job," said Pennington, host of the series.
ABC is owned by The Walt Disney Co.