Fundraising: Celebrity watch

Pam Ferris

Supports: Princess Royal Trust for Carers

Pam Ferris has just been made a vice president of the Princess Royal Trust for Carers in recognition of the work that she has done for the charity over the past six years.

The actress, best known for playing Ma Larkin in The Darling Buds of May, gave up her career to care for her dying mother. Speaking about her experiences for the recent Ring Around Carers campaign, she said: "You don't really care if you go into debt because the most important thing in your life is the caring."

Ferris, who cared for her mother in the early 1980s, said that she often felt she was just expected to get on with things. She added: "The stress levels can get very high so you need somewhere to go where people understand that and they are able to help you and steer you in the right direction."

Leslie Ash is supporting the Patients Association and will be attending the charity's Clean Hospital Summit at the Hilton Metropole in London on 14 and 15 April. The actress nearly died after contracting MSSA, a variant of MRSA. She is suing Chelsea and Westminster Hospital, where she was treated for a punctured lung more than a year ago.

Sandra Howard, wife of the Conservative party leader, has spoken about her support for Addaction, of which she is a trustee. She said: "I felt there were so many charities for abused children or cancer care that were easy to sell. But helping people give up drugs was different."

Keira Knightley went to Ethiopia with film director Richard Curtis to raise awareness of Comic Relief's work. The actress said: "Watching kids looking for food in rubbish tips made me think differently about the glamour of Hollywood."

Carol Vorderman is calling on people to support ChildLine by taking part in the Dare to Detox challenge. Vorderman is encouraging people to do what they can to get healthy, whether it be giving up smoking or improving their diet. The Countdown hostess said: "Dare to Detox is a fantastic way to give your mind, body and soul a fresh start. And whenever your motivation is flagging, remember the money you raise will help more children get through to ChildLine." The minimum sponsorship is £38. For more information go to: www.childline.org. uk/extra/daretodetox.asp.

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