The splendid way this viral photo of Chris Hemsworth is helping fight mental illness.

The celebrity tabloid news industry is basically a collection of our* guilty pleasures rolled into one massively problematic dumpster fire.

*The fact TMZ is bookmarked in my web browser means I am certainly part of the problem.

Photo via iStock.


Body-shaming, invading privacy, luring famous kids into photos using other children as bait — sometimes it feels like there is no lowest low when it comes to the paparazzi and our infatuation with famous folks.

Take actor Chris Hemsworth, for instance.

Photo by Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images.

He's currently filming his new flick, "Thor: Ragnarok," alongside co-star Tom Hiddleston in Brisbane, Australia.

And the two are drawing massive amounts of attention on the set.

But instead of all that star-studded excitement going to dumpster fire waste, one seemingly run-of-the-mill tabloid photo of Hemsworth is actually doing a whole lot of good for a worthy cause.

Livin, a small charity fighting the stigma surrounding mental illness, has been thrust into the spotlight thanks to the star.

The Australian group's name and logo appeared on a sweatshirt Hemsworth was sporting on the set after he learned about the nonprofit from a friend of the group's co-founders, BuzzFeed reported. The actor wanted to help get the word out about the charity.

And, wow, did he ever.

Since Hemsworth was spotted in his Livin gear, sales for the brand's apparel line have "spiked," according to the nonprofit.

"You can't really put it into words," cofounder Casey Lyons told Gold Coast Bulletin about the difference Hemsworth's support has made.

"Chris liked the look of it and said, 'That's a cool shirt,'" Lyons said. "When he heard the message behind it, he was more than happy to help support it."

Proceeds from apparel sales benefit Livin's mission of combating stigma and getting the word out that "it ain't weak to speak" — a motto crafted to encourage others to seek help.

Fighting the stigma is a cause near and dear to the cofounders' hearts because they lost a dear friend to suicide a few years back — a loss that inspired them to launch Livin in 2013.

Ending stigma surrounding mental illness is a key component in making progress on this issue.

While mental illness is relatively common — about 1 in 5 American adults live with some form of it, like depression or bipolar disorder, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services — harmful negative stereotypes remain.

Those living with a mental illness aren't weak, dramatic, or more dangerous than anybody else; our society has unfairly labeled them as such.

That's why it matters for a guy like Hemsworth to throw his Thor-like weight behind the issue.

"It’s so great to see someone of [Hemsworth's] profile getting behind the charity," cofounder Sam Webb explained.

Now that's some celebrity news I can consume guilt-free.

Photo by Tim Mossholder on Unsplash
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Photo by Tim Mossholder on Unsplash
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Alone, hungry, and scared, Glenda dialed 2-1-1 for help. The person on the other end of the line directed her to the Houston-based nonprofit Bread of Life, founded by St. John's United Methodist pastors Rudy and Juanita Rasmus.

For nearly 30 years, Bread of Life has been at the forefront of HIV/AIDS prevention, eliminating food insecurity, providing permanent housing to formerly homeless individuals and disaster relief.

Glenda sat in her car for 20 minutes outside of the building, trying to muster up the courage to get out and ask for help. She'd never been in this situation before, and she was terrified.

When she finally got out, she encountered Eva Thibaudeau, who happened to be walking down the street at the exact same time. Thibaudeau is the CEO of Temenos CDC, a nonprofit multi-unit housing development also founded by the Rasmuses, with a mission to serve Midtown Houston's homeless population.

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Package Free Shop has created products to help fight climate change one cotton swab at a time! Founded by Lauren Singer, otherwise known as, "the girl with the jar" (she initially went viral for fitting 8 years of all of the waste she's created in one mason jar). Package Free is an ecosystem of brands on a mission to make the world less trashy.

Here are eight of our favorite everyday swaps:

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Package Free Shop

2. Last Swab - Replacement for single use plastic cotton swabs. Nearly 25.5 billion single use swabs are produced and discarded every year in the U.S., but not this one. It lasts up to 1,000 uses as it's able to be cleaned with soap and water. It also comes in a biodegradable, corn based case so you can use it on the go!

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