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May 09, 2016 at 11:10 PM EDT

Hollywood came out in full force on Saturday for City Year’s sixth annual Spring Break – Destination Education event to raise money for underprivileged schools and their students.

The benefit, held in Culver City, California, featured celebrity hosts Chris Evans, Melissa McCarthy, and Michael B. Jordan as well as a special performance by Imagine Dragons.

PEOPLE caught up with Oscar-winner Octavia Spencer on the red carpet to find out why the cause is so important to her. “It is the panacea for all that ails us in our society,” Spencer said. I think if we give kids a break in education, we’d have fewer crimes being committed. We keep them on track; they know that they have options. … My life would have been different had I not had the education that I had.”

Watch the full video above for more from Spencer, as well as interviews with Aaron Paul, Ian Harding, and Justin Baldoni.

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