Celebrity

Astor Services for Children & Families

Star Power

Objective

Celebrity couple Jeffrey Dean Morgan and Hilarie Burton may be most widely known for their acting roles, but for children served by Astor Services for Children & Families, the couple’s super-star status comes from the powerful impact they’ve made on the kids’ daily lives.

After learning about Astor’s good works—including providing behavioral and educational services to more than 10,000 children and families annually in the Hudson Valley and the Bronx—Burton and Morgan, who have a home in New York’s Hudson Valley, immersed themselves in the renovation of one of Astor’s Residential Treatment Centers in Rhinebeck. The couple helped coordinate and starred in a fundraising performance, hired pro-bono contracting professionals and volunteers for the renovation work and provided hands-on work in getting the job done.

Impact PR & Communications helped illuminate that story. It secured and coordinated print and online media coverage of the fundraising event, pre-renovation plans, day-of work progress and resulting renovation. The subsequent and widely shared interviews (can you say, “viral on social?”), photos and video of Morgan, Burton, Astor’s CEO and others throughout the project’s various stages and afterwards, highlighted the community’s coordinated effort and Astor’s standing as a premier provider for children with emotional and behavioral challenges. As well, an illustrated, first-person feature by Burton was published in a regional glossy magazine, including her experience in coordinating the renovation, work with community members and Astor’s importance in serving deserving children and their families.

Strategy

  • Alert print and online media for continued coverage throughout the renovation project’s various stages, including pre-planning, planning, day-of work, renovation results and follow-up pieces.
  • Arrange for and manage print and video media interviews with Burton, Morgan and other notables.
  • Promote media coverage through social media channels.

Results

  • Fifty publicized features related to the renovation project appeared between April 2017 and December 2017, including more than 23 print, online, radio and broadcast media outlets, which featured written, video and recorded content.
  • The money amassed from the 2016 fundraising event paid for the first phase of Astor’s renovation project, improving the lives of kids served by the organization.
  • Hilarie Burton was chosen as an honoree at the 2017 Moves Magazine Power Women Gala for her commitment to helping children through her work with Astor Services for Children & Families, helping to spotlight Astor’s good works.
  • A second, sold-out fundraising stage performance with Burton, Morgan and other notables in 2017 raised more than $70,000 for next phase of the project, including the renovation of three other residential units.