Updated Apr 19, 2020 - Health

"One World: Together at Home" raises millions for coronavirus causes

A screenshot of former first ladies Michelle Obama and Laura Bush

Screenshots of former first ladies Laura Bush and Michelle Obama at "One World: Together at Home." Photo: Global Citizen/Twitter

The star-studded Lady Gaga-curated fundraising event "One World: Together at Home" raised $127.9 million for the COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund for WHO and $72.8 million for local and regional responders, organizer Global Citizen said in a statement early Sunday.

Why it matters: Saturday's online event honoring and celebrating those on the front lines of the fight against the novel coronavirus was broadcast worldwide and billed as the biggest concert since 1985's Live Aid, which was watched by 1.9 billion people. Former first ladies Laura Bush and Michelle Obama were among more than 70 artists and celebrities to take part from their homes.

"The coming days will not be easy, but this global family of ours is strong. We will continue to be here for one another and we will get through this crisis. Together. Thank you." 
— Michelle Obama

What they're saying: "Laura and I want to express our overwhelming gratitude to the medical professionals, first responders and so many others on the front lines risking their lives on our behalf," Obama said.

  • Bush said they're "thankful for our pharmacists, the veterinarians, the police officers, the sanitation workers, and those of you working in grocery stores or delivering food or supplies to our homes. "You're the fabric of our country, and your strength will carry us through this crisis," she added.

Of note: As people around the globe tuned in to watch the event, the global death toll from COVID-19 passed 160,000.

The big picture: The event was broadcast live on TV and most leading streaming services, including YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, Twitch, Twitter, Apple and Amazon Prime Video.

  • Other big names included Taylor Swift, Elton John, Lizzo, Billie Eilish, Celine Dion and The Rolling Stones. Stephen Colbert, Jimmy Kimmel and Jimmy Fallon hosted the virtual event.

Editor's note: This article has been updated with new details throughout.

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