“Ask anyone over the age of about 40 about that sultry summer’s day and they will doubtless remember the Wembley concert’s defining moments: Queen, David Bowie and U2, Bob Geldof’s impassioned plea for people to donate more money, and the presence of our own fairytale princess, Diana. ”Sheena Grant, East Anglican Times July, 12, 2015.
Organized in just 10 weeks the Live Aid concert resulted in the greatest outpouring of collective compassion for a faraway people the world had seen. The concert raised over $127 million and saved thousands of lives – 100% of the contributed funds went to famine relief.
Impact on Africa – There is no denying that Live Aid did a phenomenal job in raising awareness of the conditions in Ethiopia, and raised funds that helped meet a desperate need at the time. The fund raising was so successful that at one point the phone center in the US crashed when 700,000 calls came in at the same time. Additionally, the phenomenal success of Live Aid encouraged many Western nations to send surplus food supply to Ethiopia. In the US, Live Aid’s legacy moved Congress to pass PL 99-66 which declared July 13, 1985, Live Aid Day. In the UK, Margaret Thatcher agreed to put famine relief on the G7 agenda.