True Role Models: 10 Celeb Parents That Inspire Us

Celebrities have a knack for creating the drama. Most of the time we love it, but sometimes the negativity gets us down. We’ve compiled a list of 10 celebrity parents who not only reek of positive energy, they also inspire us to become better people.

From Jamie Oliver, to Angelina Jolie, to Seal, there are plenty of admirable role models coming out of Hollywood.

Click below to see the 10 celebrity parents that inspire us…

  • Seal adopts daughter Leni:

Seal and his supermodel wife Heidi Klum recently welcomed their fourth child, Lou Sulola. While the 47-year-old musician is not the biological father of Heidi’s firstborn daughter Leni, he legally adopted the adorable 5 1/2-year-old girl late last year.

It’s [the adoption] only happened fairly recently. But it doesn’t make her any more or less my daughter. She always has been,” Seal said. “All it means is that both Heidi and I wanted her to have the same last name as the rest of us. It was about Leni. I don’t want her to feel different because I know what that’s like, being a kind of stepson. And I don’t want that dynamic for my little girl.”

This was inspirational enough! But when asked about Leni’s biological father, Flavio Briatore, who has not been a part of Leni’s life, Seal could have easily started a hate-parade. But instead, only praise:

Flavio was a gentleman about the whole thing. I have a tremendous amount of respect for him. I’m not talking about in a professional level but just in the way that he has handled the situation, which, let’s face it, must have been really difficult. I don’t know if I would have been that adult about it. I certainly have nothing but good things to say about the way he’s been with us and he’s more than welcome to see Leni any time he wants to.”

Such an inspirational story!

  • Angelina’s call for action in Haiti:

Not only does she adopt orphaned children from numerous impoverished countries, Angelina Jolie also helps empower others in need. After a magnitude 7.0 earthquake hit Haiti earlier this year, Angie sprang into action. The mother-of-six and UN Goodwill Ambassador made an official statement after the disaster, encouraging people to give to SOS:

SOS has been in Haiti for over three decades, now raising over 300 orphaned and abandoned children and caring for 4,000 more impoverished children and families to help prevent child abandonment.

That was before the earthquake. Now the needs for orphaned children are almost incalculable. SOS has been pulling resources together to provide temporary shelter for unaccompanied children, safe areas for mothers, and food, medicine, trauma counseling, and reunification programs for families and children.

SOS was there before the earthquake, and during it — but most importantly, SOS will be there for many years to come — to raise these children, in their communities until they are self sufficient adults.

Where’s my checkbook?! Thanks for all that you do to make our world a better place, Angie!

  • Jennifer Garner encourages women to stop criticizing each other:

She’s our favorite celeb mom year after year. So what makes Jennifer Garner so darn loveable? The jeans, tee and ponytail look? The fact that she goes grocery shopping on the weekends and makes homemade meals for her family? Her two adorable kids who are always seen smiling? Or maybe it’s because of inspirational statements such as the one below that encourages women to stop criticizing and start supporting one another:

I will tell you what I can’t abide – and I think the Internet has really created a space for it – women criticizing other women and mothers criticizing other mothers. It just makes me crazy, whether it’s between staying at home, going to work, how long you breast-feed, if you use formula. I feel like we should just assume everyone is doing the best they can. Women should take care of each other, not tear each other down. I would just like to see a mother who really believes that she has done it all so right, you know what I mean?”

I couldn’t agree more, Jen! Let’s support one another, not knock each other down!

  • Madonna funds The Raising Malawi Academy for Girls:

Madonna – who has dominated the celeb scene for years/decades with her fashion statements, love affairs and top 10 hits – has taken on a new project. A big one! And while her fans in the western world might not realize just yet, the global impact she is making with her multi-million dollar all-girls school in Malawi, Africa is immeasurable.

The Queen of Pop talked about her latest – and most important – project in the country where her youngest children originate:

Growing up in a privileged life, I took education for granted…but coming to Malawi has taught me a lot of things and (I have) learnt to appreciate what life gives. I realized how much they deserve to be educated and so for me the best thing I could do was to build a school, a unique school that will create future female leaders, scientists, lawyers, doctors and if this school is successful it will be used as a model to replicate it in other countries.”

In a statement released to Celebrity Baby Scoop, Millennium Promise CEO John W. McArthur commented on Madonna’s efforts.

In the space of just a few years, Gumulira has made major gains in food security, health services, education, and income-generation. We are incredibly grateful to Madonna and Raising Malawi for their partnership in making this progress possible, and their broader leadership in helping to highlight the dramatic and rapid inroads that can be made against extreme poverty.”

Hats/fedoras/stylish caps off to the Material Girl!

  • Gisele Bündchen’s “empowered” drug/pain-free birth:

I used to think she was just another perfect body/face/untouchable celeb. But after hearing her incredible birth story, Gisele Bündchen became a celeb mom to admire. With so many “horror stories” out there about the birthing process, the Brazilian beauty recently spoke of a much more positive view of childbirth.

My delivery was in a bath tub, in water. I wanted to have a home birth. I wanted to be very aware and present during the birth… I didn’t want to be drugged up. So I did a lot of preparation, I did yoga and meditation, so I managed to have a very tranquil birth at home. It didn’t hurt in the slightest. The whole time my mind was focused in each contraction on the thought ‘my baby is closer to coming out.'”

A few weeks later the supermodel looked svelte on the cover of Vogue and spoke of her “empowered” birth experience:

I wanted to experience the transformation. It was the most amazing experience of my life, feeling him come through my body. And once he was born, I never felt so empowered as looking at him and thinking, Oh, my God, we did it together!”

Such a beautiful birth story! We hope to hear more like this out of Hollywood.

  • Hugh Jackman’s “mad love” for wife Deborra-Lee Furness:

Hugh Jackman has said that “being with my family, definitely, without a doubt” makes him the happiest. The sexy 41-year-old Wolverine star talked about his “mad love affair” with his wife of 14 years, Deborra-Lee Furness.

I’m madly in love with her… more and more each day.”

That’s not the only public gushing he’s done! While out at the Worldwide Orphans Foundation Benefit Gala last October, Deborra-Lee’s adoring husband went on to say:

One of the highlights is honoring this beautiful, amazing woman who happens to be my wife, and she does amazing work and has done for many years all over the world.”

Sigh! One more reason to love this amazing man!

  • Nicole Richie’s transformation:

Nicole Richie – who our readers named the most transformed by motherhood – has confessed she started drinking and doing drugs at the tender age of 13.

I was about 13 when I started drinking. I think I started using drugs at 13 as well – smoking pot, snorting cocaine. I would just do a lot of drinking and drugs and hang out till six in the morning. I was someone who was always going to get into trouble because of my situation. I can’t say exactly when it started, but I experimented with everything. I am not proud of what I did.”

When we first heard she and her boyfriend Joel Madden were expecting a baby, we were worried. Little did we know that Paris’ BFF was about to embark on a completely different and positive lifestyle.

Just one month after welcoming her adorable daughter Harlow, Nicole said,

It’s almost like I don’t even remember what life was like before her. She gives life a whole new meaning and a whole new purpose.”

Even papa Joel admitted that Nicole really came into her own when Harlow arrived:

[Parenthood] was not in the plans. But it’s the best thing that’s ever happened to us. It was a gift from God. It was a big surprise but neither one of us even skipped a beat.” He added, “Nicole can tell the difference between a whine and a cry. I’m like “Oh, she’s making a noise, I gotta go in there,” And Nicole’s like “Let her self-soothe for a minute and see how she does.”

Congratulations on your amazing transformation, Nicole. You are one of our fav celeb moms!

  • Michael J. Fox doesn’t allow Parkinson’s Disease to define him:

While Michael J. Fox was once best known for his Back to the Future films, he is now widely known as an advocate for Parkinson’s Disease, a condition he was diagnosed with in 1991. The inspirational father of four has spoken about how he doesn’t let his disease bring him – or his family – down.

With Parkinson’s, my kids just make the transition. If I am reaching for something, they will just do it and carry on. Again, people say to me, ‘How do you cope?’ And I think, cope?! It’s really hard to even think that way. Sometimes I’ll stop and think, am I selling short the experience my family is having? But then I’ll look back at it and say, no — they’re having fun.”

Michael has also talked about how he doesn’t let the disease define him:

My natural state is trembling and halting and having difficulty talking. And if I’m in public and I am symptomatic, it has no bearing on who I am or what I’m trying to get done. Not to get too Zen about it, but if I stand apart from the moment and say, ‘In this moment, I’m struggling and I can’t do what I want to do,’ not only have I not had a good moment, I’ve missed the moment completely, just by standing outside it and judging it.”

What an inspirational and positive person!

  • Jamie Oliver encourages healthy eating habits:

Can one person really make a difference? In one of his most famous quotes, former president John F. Kennedy addressed the nation with this very notion. And today, we find ourselves with a powerful role model who can charm his way into any kitchen and any skeptic’s heart. A bloak, if you will, who says he was “rubbish” at everything else in his life except for cooking.

Celebrity chef Jamie Oliver has come to America to lead a revolution. One that encourages adults to provide children with healthy, well-balanced meals. He did it in the UK – where the kids were addicted to ‘fish’ sticks and fries – and he can do it here too! Are you a part of the revolution? Jamie asks all to join:

I believe that every child in America has the right to fresh, nutritious school meals, and that every family deserves real, honest, wholesome food. Too many people are being affected by what they eat. It’s time for a national revolution. America needs to stand up for better food!

You live in an amazing country full of inspirational people and you have the power to change things. With your help, we can get better food into homes, schools and communities all over America and give your kids a better future. Sign the petition to save America’s cooking skills and improve school food. It could be the most important thing you ever do for your family. America’s health needs you now!”

Now this is one revolution I can stand behind. I’ve just signed the petition. Have you?

  • Christy Turlington, master’s student and human rights advocate:

Celebrity mom Christy Turlington might have quit the world of supermodelling, but she’s never been busier.

Long involved in health and human rights issues, Christy is currently completing a master’s degree in Public Health at Columbia University. She also spent a large chunk of last year in impoverished nations such as Tanzania, Bangladesh and Guatemala working on a self-financed film on maternal health titled, No Woman, No Cry.

Christy talked about the movie that advocates for health-care reform:

Now I’m 40 and getting this degree, I might be on the cusp of the career that I always wanted. Maternal deaths mean there are very serious things going on under the radar about women’s status. There is aid for children, but without mothers, what are their chances of survival? International health-care reform is moving toward the American model, but it’s broken. The United States ranks forty-first in maternal health. I think one of the reasons we’re doing more Cesarean sections here is because that means more people in the delivery room, and the hospital can charge you for four days instead of two. It’s all for profit and not about taking care of people.”

Christy gives credit to her good fortune and her responsibility to help the global village:

They’re incredible mothers, but I know that because Eddie and I have more… well, to live a good life, in this country, is expensive. I appreciate that my life has been unique, and that’s why I’m quite thankful for my career, that it took me this far and gave me the ability to do more.

Good fortune carries a responsibility to do good. You learn more going into things that are a little bit scary, that could potentially wake you up in some way,” she says. ‘‘One of the things I tell my daughter, when she says, ‘It’s so sad the way they live’ — I say, well, yes, but there are also a lot of things they have that we don’t have.’’

No Woman No Cry premieres at the Tribeca Film Festival on April 24. Can’t wait to see it!

Who inspires you the most?

Filed under: Angelina Jolie,Christy Turlington,Exclusives,Gisele Bundchen,Hugh Jackman,Jamie Oliver,Jennifer Garner,Madonna,Michael J. Fox,Nicole Richie,Seal


Post a Comment

  1. Anonymous

    Really enjoyed reading these stories! Love reading about celebs with good values.

  2. Anonymous

    What a pity Madonna and the journalism world have no idea what is going on in Malawi. Her school (the land for which displaced many village families over their protest) will serve about 300 girls. At least the buildings will. I have heard nothing that indicates where the teachers will come from: at present Malawi has a dire shortage of teachers and most schools are at a teacher:student ratio of 1:100. The amount of money she spent could have been used to much better goals if she really cares about and knows anything about the people of this country I love. (I am an American serving as a volunteer-in-mission in Malawi since 1997.) To the people of Malawi, this is only a “look at me and all my money” publicity stunt. They really don’t care about Madonna, but many are angry at her actions — especially taking 2 children (neither of whom was an “orphan”) out of the country in direct contradiction of Malawian law.

    • Anonymous

      Her school will serve 450-500 girls as has been stated repeatedly and the buildings will be eco-friendly and they will have sustainable gardens and power. They will employ locals to help maintain and run the school. The school will also have training programs for adults, like the other community centers her organization has built and runs. It was the government who told the organization which land they could use and lease since the land is government-owned. Most of the land was empty and adjacent to a town, but a small portion of it had been squatted on by locals who had gardens and trees there. She was made to pay them for relocation and some of the locals then requested more money after the fact and she then paid them again. Most of the teachers will come from Malawi, there has been training going on before the school is set to open. She’s already using her money to support hundreds of thousands of orphans and adults, communities, villages, and many other health and educational projects in addition to supporting many local community programs. What is wrong with also building an academy that will create more teachers, doctors, lawyers, scientists, and other female professionals that will help build up the country? Maybe you and others who sit in comfortable positions don’t like what she is doing, but surely the hundreds of thousands that are benefiting and many others who will benefit are very grateful for what she is doing and how their lives have and will improve. The results are real and tangible. Most reports from outside and within Malawi seem to indicate most Malawians actually approve of her, what she’s doing, and her presence in Malawi.

      Both children were in an orphanage and not were able to be taken care of. David was dying and would be dead had he not been adopted. Madonna offered David’s father Yohane, the only immediately family member, financial support if he wanted to keep the baby with him, but he declined. I don’t know if he did that because he had remarried and his wife’s family did not want to care for David and the baby was very sickly. The point is the father approved of the adoption. Mercy has no biological parents listed on her paperwork and is an orphan. Her grandmother and uncles approved of her adoption. Malawian law does not forbid children from leaving the country, but asks that prospective parents remain in the country for a certain amount of time while the fostering and observation period (approximately 18-24 months) is over. Judges are allowed to shorten, extend, or waive the period and reject adoptions even after the fostering period. Madonna did have that fostering and observation period for David, but residency was waived per the judge’s decision. Most children who are adopted (or are up for adoption) domestically or abroad have at least one living relative, should they be destined to live in institutions for the rest of their childhood because of it?

  3. Jessica W

    At least she’s helping who needs. I absolutely love Madonna but people always want to judge her. People are NEVER satisfied. So sad

  4. Anonymous

    Even she’s rich she can’t save the world. And come on!! She save those kids!! Mercy’s always happy and now she has A SO MUCH BETTER life, Madonna save those poor children and you guys think this is WRONG? Why can you see that she’s a human and she have feelings? Just because she has a dark past doesn’t mean she will not became a mature person. Being a mom changes Madonna’s life 🙂

  5. Judge Judy

    I also disagree with Madonna being an inspiration.
    She bought herself some children who had living relatives, but were unable to care for them. In order to move the adoptions along she had to donate large amounts of money and set up a school. I really don’t think that is inspiring. With money you can buy your way out and purchase some cute children.

    • Anonymous

      You do know that most children adopted in the US and abroad had at least one living relative, right? If they are up for adoption and aren’t able to be taken care of by family, they shouldn’t have to suffer in orphanages and institutions for the rest of their childhood because of it. That’s actually cruel and disgusting. Every child should have an opportunity to be in a loving family and have opportunities in life, besides having their basic needs met. Madonna set up schools, organizations, health centers and other community and national projects intended to help build Malawi up before she ever decided to adopt from there. She didn’t plan on adopting from Malawi, but from the UK, the place where she was living in, for at least two years prior, but when she saw how dire things were in Malawi and how David was DYING, she took action. I doubt you would be lamenting his death, like you are not lamenting the death of thousands of children who die every year in Malawi from starvation and disease. Both children were adopted legally and living family members approved of their respective adoptions. It is you who is going against their will to give these children a better life with more opportunities and a shot at survival and an education that could perhaps help them help their country. Those who criticize others for taking action and changing the world for the better are the least likely to actually do something themselves rather than just point fingers. It’s vile.

      • Judge Judy

        Oh, you caught me Anon.
        I am vile, and I obviously wish that Madonna’s children had died in an Orphanage. I must be going against their will for a better life.
        I also was astonished to find out that children are given up for adoption in the States because their living parents can’t care for them! gasp!
        I am familiar with adoption and I am aware of how you go about placing a child for adoption. But thank you for breaking it down for me.
        I still don’t think Madonna is inspiring.

        • Anonymous

          Yeah, because that’s exactly what I said. Fail.

          You can’t seem to grasp things and concepts and then go off making ridiculous, exaggerated statements to dismiss valid points. If you can’t have a grown up discussion about things then don’t try to engage in one.

          I don’t care whether you find Madonna to be an inspiration or not, the point was you were stating things as facts when they weren’t and I corrected you. You had nothing valid to add or dispute, so you resorted to a poor attempt at sarcasm.

  6. Debs

    I don’t agree that Gisele Bundchen is inspiration because she gave birth without drugs? About eleventy million other women share that accomplishment.

    I’d actually swap her out for Jada Pinkett Smith who was determined to make sure she had a good relationship with Will Smith’s ex wife and has been very vocal about how important that relationship is to Will’s firstborn son.

    • Mariah

      Oh cue the violin playing. This isn’t about stepparents, adoption etc. This is about celeb parents who have made a difference. At the end of the day-

      Gisele is a UN Goodwill Ambassador.

      Madonna has given charity countless other times over her entire career.

      To be envious is to regret one’s failure to achieve good fortune or to regret the successes of others. The envious suffer twice, when they don’t succeed and when others do. Their negative attitude makes them unpopular, which further escalates their envy.

      Those who act maliciously because of envy usually begin by criticizing and maligning others, as well as lying and spreading rumors. Although the envious are troublesome to others, they are a torment to themselves.

      Envy springs from a sense of emptiness or unworthiness and the resultant thoughts and malicious acts are done to dull, soften, or conceal the pain.

      They may act cruelly, but it’s not because they dislike you, but because they’re unlike you.

      If they belittle you, they’re just trying to cut you down to their size.

  7. Anonymous

    Madonna’s inspirational because she’s been helping others and giving back to various charities in the US and world wide since the beginning of her career. I really dislike people who bring out their claws and attack those who are actually trying to do good in the world. If you don’t like them as people or artists or how they do things that’s one thing, but to discard their charity work for it is idiotic.

  8. Lynni

    Why do some people care about other people’s exes? (Shame, poor Tom Brady’s ex and so on). Those people don’t know you and don’t care about you. Get a life.

  9. Sophia

    I think these are all beautiful and inspiring stories. I have to say, I personally am moved the most by Seal’s words, and the fact that he only has lovely things to say about Flavio and his involvement in the adoption process. He really has a way with words, and has beautifully and succintly expressed this wonderful story of loving father and daughter 🙂
    On a more international scale, though, Angelina is definitely inspiring in her tireless efforts to make the world a better and more compassionate and alert place.
    But really, all these stories are wonderful. Great post 🙂

  10. elie

    Concerning what Seal said about Briatore, i think it has to be heard in a different way, i think seal he is just saying in a smart way that Briatore is a selfish person surely for not showing in a little child life, its the contrary of what he thinks, very smart…

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