Heroes in Hard Times 2009

Hollywood's Heroes

Whether it's dishing out food to the homeless or campaigning for children, Hollywood's A-List – Brad, Oprah, Leo, George and more – take time to give back. By Cara Lynn Shultz

MATT DAMON

After the Bourne Identity star visited Africa (here, with a cotton farmer in Zambia) in May, the actor took up the cause to fight poverty and AIDS in the stricken continent. Since then, he's hosted a fund-raiser that raised almost $1.8 million to fight global poverty and is working on a documentary, Running the Sahara, which addresses the lack of water in Africa. "I feel like I just started down this road – down what's going to be a lifelong trek – but it's most important that we all make it together," he told PEOPLE.