Clowning for a cause: Red Nose Day invades America ... how can you help?

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A few things you might see this Thursday: red noses being sold at your local Walgreens, red noses all over social media, and red noses on primetime TV.

It's America's first-ever "Red Nose Day," a campaign that uses laughs to raise money for children and young people living in poverty. In honor of the cause, NBC will host a three-hour comedy special kicking off at 8 p.m.

The show will be chock-full of entertainers, including Will Ferrell, Jimmy Fallon, Reese Witherspoon, Jack Black, Pharrell and many others, the Red Nose Day website says.

And yes, this charitable holiday does involve the wearing of clown noses. Selfie-takers (including some celebrities) sporting the red pieces are already flooding social media:

Red Nose Day is an import from the United Kingdom, where it's been a tradition for 30 years, Variety notes.

This year's fundraiser across the pond (back in March) raised more than £78 million pounds – or, about $123 million in U.S. dollars.

How can you help?

Red Nose Day is accepting donations online, but you can also chip in if you happen to be out picking up a few things at the store. Walgreens is a partner of the U.S. campaign, and a portion of proceeds from a number of products it sells – like M&Ms, 7-Up and Pringles, to name just a few – will go to the cause.

Walgreens is also selling the signature red noses, but the Red Nose Day organization says the items are selling out in some parts of the country.

Click here to donate.

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