By Courtney Allen

If there is one thing celebrities have in common with those of us who spend our lives out of the spotlight and away from the paparazzi flashes, it’s giving back. As a nation, and as individual people, we all have the ability to raise our country’s standards through strengthening the educational system, empowering youth, women, the homeless and the disabled, raising money for disaster relief, sustaining the environment and so much more.

Although it often slips our minds as celebs glamorously glide down the red carpet in Alexander McQueen and drop six figures on Bugattis and Bentleys, celebrities are classified by more than just “the rich and famous”. They are volunteers, humanitarians, environmentalists and ambassadors. Many  of them often use their fame, power and influence for the benefit of others, especially in the midst of tragedies like September 11th. These super-famous couples did just that in order to both support and honor those who suffered and continue to suffer as a result of that horrific day in 2001:

1. BeyoncĂ© and Jay Z: You could say that Beyoncé and Jay Z have it all. The proud parents and performers are one of the most powerful pairs in the entire world, both bringing in one of the largest incomes of any couple. There is no doubt that Bey and Jay are living the lap of luxury with baby Blue Ivy in New York, but they spread just as much love as they do money. In 2009, the king of rap himself held a September 11th benefit concert in New York City, of course, with Queen Bey by his side. The concert was expected to raise nearly one million dollars, which was all donated to the New York Police and Fire Widows’ and Children’s Benefit Fund. But it doesn’t end there. For the 10th anniversary of 911, Beyoncé released a single entitled “God Bless the USA” in order to raise funds for the same organizations as her hubby just two years before. Back in 2011, Mrs. Carter told Ace Entertainment reporters, “We were all affected by the tragedies of 911 and continue to keep the families who lost loved ones close to our hearts.” Bey and her other half sure showed just how much 911 means to them.

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2. Mariah Carey and Nick Cannon: With 5 years of marriage, a set of twins and extremely successful careers in every field of entertainment between the two of them under their belts, Mariah and Nick are unstoppable in every aspect of their lives. The parents may be super busy these days with play dates, romantic vacations and appearances, but they still make time to give back to those in need, just like they always have. In 2001, just ten days after the tragic events of September 11th, Mariah participated in a benefit concert, America: A Tribute to Heroes, in New York City. Her performance helped raise money for 911 victims and their families, as well as New York City firefighters and police. Triple-threat Nick Cannon still gives back on 911, but in a different way. Two years ago, the actor/comedian hit the streets of Baldwin Hills in Los Angeles and hosted a back-to-school event in which he gave away backpacks and school supplies to over 500 kids. Cannon also joined the kids for fun and games, as well as a concert that featured the New Boyz and other artists. Looks like this power pair knows how to give back in all the right ways.

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 What are some ways you can give back on 911? Share your ideas with us!