Since it was established in 1971, Hard Rock has been committed to a wide variety of philanthropic causes and activities around the world. Hard Rock International has made it both its business and abiding passion to make the earth a safer, healthier and better place to live.
Hard Rock International began working hard to “Save the Planet™” long before the environment became a widely supported cause. Its pioneering mission to give something back – both on a global basis and by involvement in smaller community projects – has not only served as a catalyst to raise funds, but it has also enhanced the very profile of corporate charity work.
A wide range of charities have benefited from Hard Rock donations – in the form of dollars, food and beverage, merchandise and man hours – including the September 11 Relief Efforts, Elton John AIDS Foundation, Music Assistance Program (MAP), Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA), World Hunger Year (WHY), Nelson Mandela’s Children’s Fund, Give Kids The World, American Cancer Society, TJ Martell Foundation, Peace Games, Dr. Susan Love Research Foundation and the Sharon Osbourne Colon Cancer Program, to name a few. In 1990, Hard Rock International launched its Signature Series T-shirt line to benefit various charities. This innovative series involves musicians and artists – from Elton John to Carlos Santana to Eric Clapton to Bruce Springsteen and Ozzy Osbourne – donating an original piece of artwork to be reproduced on a limited edition T-shirt, sales of which benefit the artist’s nominated charity. One of the more successful avenues of fundraising to date – Hard Rock’s Signature Series line has raised millions for a wide variety of causes.
Never straying too far from its musical roots, Hard Rock International has participated in numerous high-profile rock charity events of the past decade, a tradition that began with Live Aid in 1985. From the Nelson Mandela Tribute at Wembley in London, to The Wall concert in Berlin, to a Bob Dylan Tribute in New York – if there’s music and a meaningful cause, count on Hard Rock to be there to help.
In 2005, Hard Rock utilized its “Crank It Up” program to benefit victims of the Asian Tsunami and Hurricane Katrina, where guests dining at cafes around the globe are encouraged to round up their checks to the nearest dollar, and each contribution is donated directly to the American Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund. Hard Rock also arranged for supergroup Velvet Revolver, originally scheduled to appear at the grand opening of Hard Rock Hotel and Casino Biloxi, to perform at Hard Rock Live! Orlando, where all proceeds from the event were donated to American Red Cross.
In 2007, Hard Rock partnered with U2’s The Edge to raise awareness and funds for Music Rising – a campaign to replace the lost instruments of the musicians affected by the hurricanes that devastated the Gulf Coast region – as the exclusive global retailer of a fashionable and charitable Music Rising T-shirt. Hard Rock also launched its March on Stage concert series, featuring live concerts around the world, to benefit Music Rising. In April 2007, Hard Rock Cafe New York hosted the Icons of Music Auction, which included a special appearance by The Edge himself, raising more than $2 million for his charity.
In every Hard Rock city, the staff makes it a priority to become a valuable community partner. Members of Hard Rock International’s “Ambassador Program” provide ongoing fundraising and volunteer services to a variety of charities and non-profit organizations vital to each community that each Hard Rock serves. Hard Rock Ambassadors have been involved with charitable causes, ranging from neighborhood recycling drives to annual Earth Day events, beach clean-ups, meals for the homeless and more.
Hard Rock International also maintains the “Hard Rock Foundation,” which acts as an umbrella for a full range of fundraising and charity initiatives. The Fund was established to ensure that contributions go towards organizations and projects where they will be the most beneficial.
Aside from its substantial donations over the past 35 years, Hard Rock International has greatly increased awareness of vital issues including lifethreatening diseases, such as cancer and AIDS, homelessness, environmental causes, hunger, animal abuse, education through music and the care and nurturing of children. Its charitable work will continue to be integral to “what” Hard Rock “is”.