After being unable to attend a tribute for theater director Ed Wilson in late September 2008, Ian gave a donation to the bursary created in the late man's name.
In 2008, Sir Ian gave a talk and answered questions from his audience in a one evening fundraising event to benefit the Albert Kennedy Trust (AKT). The charity comes to the aid of homeless gay teen and was founded after the senseless death of Albert Kennedy; the young man died after falling from a car park structure in Manchester while escaping a homophobic attack.
In 2008, Sir Ian McKellen did a self-portrait as a wizard to be auctionned for the Kaos Signing Choir. The item from Sir Ian was sold for the highest amount at 610 pounds.
In 2008, Sir Ian donated a signed copy of one of his favorite book for it to be auctioned off; other books were donated by Dame Helen Mirren, Sir David Jason and Gary Lineker. The proceed of the auction went to the charity Book Aid International which raises money to develop literacy in Sub-Saharan Africa.
Sir Ian contributed a Doodle to the National Doodle Campaign, which auctions off celebrity doodles for charity.
Sir Ian participated in the 10 kilometre Walk For Life on the 19th of June, 2005 to raise funds for HIV and Aids charity CRUSAID.
Sir Ian donated the shirt and tie he wore in the movie The Da Vinci Code to Bolton School, his old school in England, while on a visit there. The items were auctioned off on eBay to raise money to help fund clever children from less wealthy families to attend the fee-paying school.
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