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Debra Messing, Wendi McLendon-Covey, Niecy Nash and More Stars Tell Us How They Give Back (Exclusive)

These stars are doing their part. At the fourth annual Television Industry Advocacy Awards September 15, nine stars were honored for their work with various charities. Ahead of the ceremony, Us caught up with the honorees and guests to chat about the causes close to their heart.

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“I’m really humbled,” Debra Messing told Us of being recognized for her work with Population Services International, a nonprofit dedicated to promoting public health. The Will and Grace star, 50, called her charity work “my soul work” and noted that “for that to be acknowledged means a lot.”

Debra Messing and Niecy Nash arrive at 2018 Television Advocacy Awards Benefiting The Creative Coalition at the Sofitel Los Angeles at Beverly Hills on September 15, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. MEGA; Amanda Edwards/Getty Images

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For honoree Patricia Heaton, being recognized was a step in the right direction. “One of my goals with World Vision,” explained the Smallfoot star, 60, of her work with the Christian child poverty fighting charity, “was to introduce the organization to the Hollywood community, because no one had heard of it.”

Host and 2016 honoree Niecy Nash was especially excited to present her Reno 911 costar Wendi McLendon-Covey with the award for her work with WriteGirl, a nonprofit which pairs young girls with mentors. “I’m so happy that I could be here to support her,” Nash, 48, told Us.

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And McLendon-Covey was equally thrilled to be on the receiving end. “I just hope people are inspired,” the Goldbergs star, 48, noted. “Sometimes when it comes to getting involved with organizations, you think, well I can’t do anything. I’m one person. Am I really going to make a difference? Well, you’re not going to, Debbie Downer, with that attitude!”

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