Diaz gives back to Iraq war veterans

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Written by: Sari N. Kent

Actress Cameron Diaz is using her celebrity status to help Iraq war veterans with their medical and emotional scars and to raise money to help those who put their country before themselves.

Cameron Diaz thought she was just doing a friend a favor, but that favor turned into the actress

bestowing her time, effort and celebrity to aid Iraq war veterans.     According to an article on Variety.com, “[Diaz’s friend] Sharon Chatten had asked Diaz to be a part of a ‘Welcoming Home’ for Iraq veterans. ‘It was a Sunday. It was a casual thing,’ Diaz recalls. ‘Sharon said it would mean a lot if you came and just said hello and took some pictures. I said, ‘Yeah, absolutely. I would love to do that.’”

I was seeing all these guys. I was like, wow, this is not just some guy who’s got a missing leg. This guy is affected for life. His family’s affected for life.” Then Diaz found herself looking at the future. “Oh my god, what are all his struggles going to be? He’s not the same man he was when he left. How will that affect his marriage? His children? His community? And it spreads.”

Diaz then swung into action. She proceeded to tour the Los Angeles VA hospital and wondered what she could do to help these men who put their lives on the line for our country.

Diaz’s next stop was the Iraq and Afghanistan

Veterans of America (IAVA), which attends to such troubles as traumatic brain injuries, mental health issues and an impaired Veterans Affairs system. “What I love about the IAVA is that they are so good at being advocates for these soldiers. They get them the best deals possible,” the actress says. On April 30, Diaz hosted a fund-raiser with producer Norman Lear and CAA agent Nick Styne. “It connected our entertainment industry with IAVA,” Diaz says.

“I want to utilize my celebrity as best as possible. And that’s not something that comes with a manual. Everybody has to follow what makes sense for them.”

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