Madonna marked the start of construction of her school for girls in Malawi on Monday by planting a tree at the site.
She arrived in the impoverished southern African country accompanied by daughters Lourdes and Mercy, and sons Rocco and David.
Madonna, 51, adopted Mercy from Malawi earlier this year and David from there in 2008.
“If this school is a success – with God-willing it will be – we will replicate it not only in Malawi but in other parts of the world as well,” she said.
The Raising Malawi Academy for Girls, scheduled to open by 2011, will be similar to the school built by talk show host Oprah Winfrey in South Africa.
Readmitted to ‘GH’
Jonathan Jackson, who originally played Luke and Laura Spencer’s son Lucky on ABC’s “General Hospital,” returned to the show Tuesday.
Jackson, 27, began playing Lucky Spencer at age 11 with an intensity that earned him three daytime Emmys in six years.
After leaving the show in May 1999, he went on to other acting gigs, played music and married a fellow “GH” alum, Lisa Vultaggio, who played Hannah.
Globes’ extra attraction
British comedian Ricky Gervais has been picked as host of the Golden Globes, the first time in more than a decade that the freewheeling Hollywood awards show has used an emcee.
After Gervais made a hilarious appearance as a presenter at last season’s Globes, the show’s organizers decided to sign him up to host the Jan. 17 ceremony.
The birthday bunch
Actress Joan Plowright is 80. Country musician Charlie Daniels is 73. Actress Jane Alexander is 70. Actor Dennis Franz is 65. Actress Daphne Zuniga is 47. Actress Lauren Holly is 46. Actress Jami Gertz is 44. Actor-comedian Andy Richter is 43. Actress Julia Roberts is 42. Singer Ben Harper is 40. Country singer Brad Paisley is 37. Actor Joaquin Phoenix is 35. Singer Justin Guarini is 31.
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