Justin Bieber’s #GiveBackPhilippines campaign to raise funds for victims of Typhoon Haiyan has already surpassed its $1 million goal, with the drive ending Monday.
The singer launched the drive 12 days ago with an announcement video at Prizeo.com, a celebrity fundraising platform.
Currently donations have reached $1,081,247, and counting.
The campaign stops accepting donations at 23:59 PST, December 16.
To continue to contribute until then, click here.
[Update: The drive is now closed. The final figure raised was $1,161,168.]
Bieber’s native Canadian government has offered to match donations made by citizens, and some Action Against Hunger donors will also match donations.
In addition, the UK’s The Mirror reported the singer has raised over $3 million for Typhoon Haiyan relief.
Monies from Justin’s #GiveBackPhilippines campaign are directed to the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), Action Against Hunger, and the Philam Foundation.
The quick response was most likely a result of the campaign’s multiple prize draw and grand prize, in which the winner will hang out with the teen singer in a Los Angeles studio while he records part of his new album.
“The moment I heard about the tragedy a few weeks back,” Justin said in the launch video. “I knew I could count on you guys to make a difference. So I’m looking for you guys to help me, help them.”
Bieber in the Philippines.
However, the campaign received its most significant boost after Bieber and his crew flew to Manila on Tuesday, December 10, and then onto the worst-hit Central Leyte Province capital of Tacloban City.
The 19-year-old performed a surprise acoustic show — which he called the real “last Believe tour show” — singing Christmas carols and some of his new Journals collection for a rapt audience of children and older.
Bieber and co. distributed T-shirts, books, basketballs and toys to children, and were taken to two relief centers in local schools; one, a temporary learning center, the other a home for around 300 families. He also played basketball with local youth and the head coach of the national basketball team.
Bieber in Tacloban on December 10.
Speaking to Manila’s TV5 television network, which filmed Bieber and his manager Scooter Braun in Tacloban for an interview, the pair opened up about their reasons for making the trip.
Of his decision to join the relief effort, Bieber said:
“I feel like this is something that was really just strongly in my heart. I wanted to come out here and see these kids, bring some hope to these kids, bring some inspiration and let them know that it’s a big world and God is — God is, great.”
Asked how he felt seeing footage of Typhoon Haiyan’s destructive effect in the Philippines — the November 8 storm killed nearly 6,000 and displaced millions — the Canadian replied:
“It was unbelievable and I said, “How can we help?,” with a nod to Braun sitting nearby, the singer added, “We came up with a game-plan and here we are.”
After echoing those sentiments, Braun revealed a special offer to a group of Filipino fans relating to Bieber’s Believe concert-movie world premiere this week.
“We’re going to now allow a couple of fans to see it exclusively,” he said. “Then, we’re also going to fly some fans over from the Philippines to his premiere on the 18th.”
Braun added he and Bieber wanted to, “bring some light into their life and give them a trip they’ll remember for the rest of their lives.”
The Believe movie premiere will be held at Regal L.A. Live this Wednesday.
By anyone’s standards it’s an impressive effort and suggests a need for caution in regard to other vagaries.
Taking to Twitter on Sunday after news that the #GiveBackPhilippines campaign had hit $1 million, Justin wrote,
— Justin Bieber (@justinbieber) December 15, 2013