When we think of celebrity baby showers, we usually don’t think about charity—but maybe we should.
Supermodel Coco Rocha is the latest mom-to-be to use her star power for good, hosting a virtual baby shower to benefit the Liya Kebede Foundation, which aims to improve healthcare for women, especially during pregnancy and childbirth.
Rocha, 26, posted a message on social media today saying that 800 women die every day during childbirth, and urged friends and fans to donate to the foundation instead of buying gifts.
“It’s a way to drive awareness to the issue, to bring in new champions and support the cause,” Melissa Janis, executive director of the Liya Kebede Foundation, told TODAY.com of the partnership with Rocha.
“Celebs have such great reach,” she added.
Rocha isn’t alone in her desire to help. The foundation has done similar online campaigns with fellow model Doutzen Kroes and actress Kristen Bell when they were pregnant.
And last year, Shakira partnered with UNICEF for a “World Baby Shower,” urging fans to show their support by buying measles vaccines, blankets, food, water and other essentials for needy children. She did a similar campaign when she was pregnant with her first son in 2013.
Rocha is encouraging fans to use the hashtag #showerwithlove and follow the Liya Kebede Foundation on social media today, while showing off photos of her growing baby bump—her first child with husband James Conran. Janis declined to comment on how much these campaigns usually raise, but said the most important benefit is spreading awareness of maternal health issues.
“Women around the world are at risk because they can’t access even the most basic care during pregnancy and childbirth,” Janis said. “Those are the women we’re trying to reach and call attention to.”
You can donate $5 by texting "Give 5" to (347) 537-5304 or visiting lkfound.org/coco.