It’s just been announced that in partnership with Jack Dorsey’s #startsmall, Rihanna’s Clara Lionel Foundation is donating more than $15 million to communities of colour struggling who have been disadvantage by racism during the COVID-19 pandemic:
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Communities of color, low-income households, LGBTQ youth, at-risk students out of school and others hardest hit by racial inequity and lack of access to services during the COVID-19 pandemic are in need of critical support. Weâ€™ve funded over $15 million in grants with @jackâ€™s #startsmall to @ChildMindInstitute @jedfoundation @TrevorProject @brightstarcommunityoutreach @fooddepository @wsunitedchi @resurrectionproject @newarkworkingkitchens @lacasanwk @NESFNJBroad @ChicagoParks @1summerchicago and The Networkâ€™s Crisis Response Fund to address this crisis. Learn moreðŸ”at the link in our bio. #pullup.
This is an important and specific point – to remind people of the connection between systemic racism and the global health crisis. Marginalised communities have been disproportionately affected by the coronavirus and they are in a more vulnerable position because of institutionalised oppression. This recent $15 million pledge is on top of the previously announced donations that Clara Lionel Foundation have already confirmed.
Over the last few months, as celebrities have been fumbling all over the place, I’m often asked who about the ones who are managing their influence and their fame without f-cking up. Rihanna is always top of mind. She’s clearly educating herself about the issues because she was already doing the work before the pandemic and well before George Floyd’s murder. At the same time, she’s still actively engaged in her other work, her businesses, and she’s been able to go about that business without it feeling disconnected or incongruous from her activism.
Late last night this was posted on the Savage x Fenty Instagram:
On that same account though, alongside Rihanna feeling herself in yellow, are posts celebrating a diverse group of Black creatives:
Rihanna’s businesses have been successful because the products are inclusive. Making the products inclusive is consistent with her social justice efforts. She is making people, people who’ve been often ignored, feel seen. And even in profiting from it, that has purpose – because for too long the “excuse” was that equality wasn’t economically viable. Isn’t it, though?