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The Entertainment Industry Foundation Relaunches Disaster Relief Program as DEFY:DISASTER

Defy:Disaster’s “Lend a Hand” Campaign Calls for Unity in Entertainment to Support California Firefighters

The Entertainment Industry Foundation (EIF) has reintroduced the full breadth of its disaster relief efforts under the program name Defy:Disaster. The program, which has operated under the name Music for Relief since 2018, is dedicated to providing aid to survivors and communities affected by natural disasters to help them recover and rebuild. Supported by the entertainment community and the public, EIF’s disaster relief program has responded to more than 40 natural disasters, including the current COVID-19 pandemic and hurricane relief for the Southeast. As the first campaign under its new name, Defy:Disaster has launched Lend a Hand to support firefighters in California battling another season of record-breaking fires.

In 2018, Music for Relief, a nonprofit founded by the band Linkin Park, joined EIF and became the name of its official crisis response program with the goal of expanding the vision and scope of its efforts. With the help of unity partners throughout the entertainment industry, the program has responded to disasters related to hurricanes, the pandemic, and wildfires. The latter efforts included donating funding for vital equipment, including hydration packs central to firefighters’ safety, to first responders across California, and making grants to local partner organizations supporting families impacted by the wildfires. In just two years, the program has been utilized and supported by the entire entertainment community. As EIF’s disaster relief program changes its name to Defy:Disaster to reflect the broader entertainment effort, Music for Relief will continue as a fund of EIF dedicated to music-driven efforts in response to disasters.

This year, EIF’s disaster relief program and its fund partners supporting disaster response have granted more than $10 million to beneficiaries. The goal of the current Lend a Hand campaign is to equip California firefighters with structure fire gloves that protect them in residential, commercial, and high-rise fires, which present some of the most challenging and dangerous working conditions. To donate to the Lend a Hand campaign, please visit

“We have been able to address a need in the entertainment community and provide resources that inform a more impactful response on behalf of our industry in a time of crisis,” stated Jeff Bader, Vice Chair of the EIF Board of Directors, and President, Program Planning, and Strategy at NBCUniversal.
Continued EIF President and CEO Nicole Sexton, “Whether our response is a roadblock telecast, such as GRADUATE TOGETHER, that celebrated our high school seniors impacted by the pandemic or fundraising within the industry to provide critical equipment that helps protect our firefighters, our collective response makes an extraordinary impact on affected communities.”

Supporting people during all phases of the disaster cycle including preparedness, immediate relief and long-term recovery, Defy:Disaster is guided by an advisory council that includes a team of experts in the field of crisis response including Dr. Irwin Redlener (National Center for Disaster Preparedness at the Earth Institute, Columbia University), Regine Webster (Center for Disaster Philanthropy), Kirsten Mildren (United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs), Abby Browning (California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services), and Graham Everett (Los Angeles Fire Department). With the advice of the council, Defy:Disaster activates in response to natural disasters by providing critical guidance and infrastructure to the entertainment community and mobilizing efforts to best serve those impacted by a disaster.

“Harnessing the collective power of the entertainment community in a time of crisis is crucial to disseminating critical information to the public and to building responses that make a meaningful impact for those affected by disasters,” said Dr. Redlener.

EIF’s disaster relief efforts originated with the nonprofit’s formation more than 75 years ago, when the organization provided grants to wartime agencies such as the United States Organizations and American Red Cross. Later efforts included Hope for Haiti Now and Somos Una Voz, during which national, multi-network telecasts raised millions of dollars for those impacted by the disasters.

To join Defy:Disaster as a Unity Partner, please contact Whitney Showler at

To support Defy:Disaster, EIF’s Disaster Relief and Recovery Program, please click

About Defy:Disaster
Defy:Disaster is dedicated to providing aid to survivors and communities affected by natural disasters to help them recover and rebuild. Building on the Entertainment Industry Foundation’s historic commitment to furthering the philanthropic efforts of the entertainment community, Defy:Disaster allows for immediate response in the wake of a natural disaster.
The program aims to support immediate and long-term relief with a primary goal of making a powerful and sustainable impact in highly affected areas.

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