Organizers behind last week's Hand in Hand: A Benefit for Hurricane Relief telethon have released updated fundraising totals, now putting the figure at more than $55 million raised to aid those affected by Hurricanes Harvey and Irma. Previously, it was reported the Sept. 12 event raised $44 million.
The one-hour telethon was organized by artist manager Scooter Braun and Houston rapper Bun B and broadcast across several television, radio and streaming networks reaching an audience of over 40 million. More than 130 celebrities showed up to man the phones or ask for help, including Justin Bieber, Beyonce, Leonardo DiCaprio, Tom Hanks, Nicki Minaj, Kings of Leon, Oprah Winfrey, Gwen Stefani and Justin Timberlake, among others.
"It has been truly amazing to witness the reactions in our country in the wake of Hurricanes Harvey and Irma," said Braun in a statement. "In the aftermath of tragedy, it’s important that we take action and care for our neighbors.There is still so much rebuilding to be done and our hope is to not only continue to raise funds but also inspire others to do what they can to help. People are still in need, and will continue to be for a very long time. We all need to do our part."