Yet Another Reason to Love Bruno Mars

Just when you thought you couldn’t love Bruno Mars any more than you already did.

I know…impossible.

Well, it’s very likely when the “Versace on the Floor” crooner announced donating $1 million to Flint, Michigan’s relief efforts to decontaminate the city’s lead laced water supply.

More specifically proceeds will go to The Community Foundation of Greater Flint, a local charity which works with nonprofit organizations dedicated to improving the health and development of children affected by the water crisis, as well as supporting small and minority-owned businesses in the area.

Bruno made the announcement on stage at Auburn Hills, Michigan, close by to Detroit and Flint.

God bless you Michigan!

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The Guardian reports Bruno released this statement about the much needed donation.

I’m very thankful to the Michigan audience for joining me in supporting this cause. Ongoing challenges remain years later for Flint residents, and it’s important that we don’t forget our brothers and sisters affected by this disaster. As people, especially as Americans, we need to stand together to make sure something like this never happens in any community ever again.

Thanks Bruno for remembering the forgotten Flint residents still affected by the 2014 fatal water crisis.

Let’s hope others are paying attention.

Rihanna Donates Bikes to Malawi School Girls

Rih Rih’s loyalty isn’t just with Kendrick.

The “Love on the Brain” pop star is showing some more love to Malawi girls—by not only providing school scholarships, but bikes too.

Yes, bikes. No, she’s not searching for the next Ayesha McGowen.

Rihanna’s Clara Lionel Foundation teamed up with bike-sharing platform ofo to donate bikes to Malawi girls receiving secondary school scholarships. So they can have a dependable way to get to class.

Rihanna Becomes Global Ambassador for Education

Transportation is a major prob in the SouthEast African nation, girls have to travel long distances to get to class, which isn’t safe or doable.

Hence only an 8% attendance for secondary school compared to 4.6 million attending primary.

Let’s sprinkle some black girl magic on this equation.

Rihanna, who visited Malawi in January as a Global Ambassador for education, proud to be leading the charge, here is what the Navy’s queen had to say:

I’m so happy about the Clara Lionel Foundation’s new partnership with ofo because it will help so many young people around the world receive a quality education, and also help the young girls of Malawi get to school safely, cutting down those very long walks they make to and from school all alone.”

All hail queen Rih.

Common is Helping Teachers Start School Year Off Right

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Rapper Common is making his educator mama proud.

By donating $10Gs to the Renaissance School of the Arts in Harlem today, through the AdoptAClassroom.org non-profit. The national org gives teachers (who shell $600 outta pocket for pens, paper, trapper keepers, etc) and their students much needed school supplies.

“Growing up, I watched how my Mother cared for her students, both as an educator and outside of the classroom. I realized very early just how important it is to have an adult in your corner, and for many kids that adult is often a teacher,” said Common. “I’m proud to support AdoptAClassroom.org and their partnership with Burlington to help provide classroom supplies to teachers and students in need.”

The coat factory is also throwing a hat in the cause. Pun intended. Don’t think I don’t see you rolling your eyes. Y’all love my corny jokes.

Anyway back on topic. Burlington is pushing their down-coat loving customers to donate at least a $1 to AdoptAClassroom.org to ease teachers pocketbook burdens by running the campaign in all 599 stores across the country.

The Save Our School Supplies (SOSS) drive will run through August 19, 2017. All the money raised will be doled out to teachers this fall where nearby Burlington stores exist.

So get to shopping guys, so teachers can shop less.

Kendrick Lamar Buys Super Fan a Wheelchair-Accessible Van

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Generosity must be in his DNA.

How else would you explain Kendrick Lamar’s obsession with giving away cars?

Most recently the five time Grammy-winning rapper surprised super fan Jennifer Phillips with a wheelchair-accessible van during a tour stop in Texas on Friday.

The Dallas native—who has gone to every Kendrick Lamar show in the Big D—started a GoFundMe page to raise money for the van.

Kendrick Lamar and his Top Dawg Entertainment record label must have caught wind of the quadriplegic’s wish because she was was whisked backstage to meet the Humble rapper, and given a handwritten thank you tee.

So about last night… lol. If you know me or even just look in my Instagram profile for two minutes then you know I am a huge Kendrick Lamar and TDE fan/supporter for YEARS. I've been to every show Kendrick has had in Dallas including the first one that even he forgot about lol and one in Austin. That's 8 shows and not including the other TDE artists shows. I was a big fan of music and concerts before my injury but I never supported and loved a label like theirs before. Of course they have great music but they are also great people. None of them have ever treated me like a stranger or a charity case lol. I didn't meet them because I'm in a wheelchair. I just know great people (shout out to @bluethegreat for the initial in person introduction to Dot & Q). I never supported them for any benefits like this lol. Their music and shows were enough for me. But this is amazing and I thank you from the bottom of my heart. I love you all and always will. Thank God for you Kendrick and I will continue to pray for you. And like I said, next time I'm driving myself to your show lol. Thanks to the whole team! #tde

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Last but not least Kendrick gave her the money for the van.

Now that’s an unforgettable night. Jen will be a K.L. stan for life behind this.

She’s even plotting the next Kendrick concert.

“Next time I’m driving myself to your show,” Phillips wrote on Instagram.

Fair warning, it likely won’t be a V-class Mercedes Benz type whip.

So please, please, please don’t give this really good dude flak for that like when he bought his lil sis a Toyota Camry for her high school graduation.

I’d rather a Camry (nice ride, BTW) than a bus pass. That’s all I’m sayin’.

And I’m sure Jen, who injured her spinal cord in a car accident in 2007, is appreciative of the comfortable ride.

Touchdown for Charity!! NFL Ballers Invest in 12-year-old’s Lemonade Business

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Minute Maid better watch their back, ’cause Mikaila Ulmer is coming through with her Me & The Bees lemonade, and she’s got some major backup.

From heavy hitters.

The Houston Chronicle reports current NFL players—Arian Foster, Glover Quin, Duane Brown, Jonathan Grimes, Omar Bolden, Bobby Wagner, Darius Slay, Sharrick McManis, EJ Manuel and Malick Jackson—banded together to invest $810K into Mikaila’s lemonade stand-turned-grown-woman biz. (Me and The Bees lemonade is on Whole Food shelves, y’all)

“She’s so humble,” Foster told the Houston Chronicle. “You always have to be open and willing to learn, and she is. I’m learning from her, too. It’s a cycle. You have to keep an open mind and continue to grow.”

“Of course, any time you invest in anything you look at if it’s going to be profitable,” Foster said. “We look for companies that match our main focus of developing a good product, but are also good people and do it for the right reasons. It’s more than about money to us. We believe that investing in small black businesses is extremely important.

The beverage tween and Austin native, met Arian Foster and Glover Quin at “Been Brilliant Entrepreneur Day” at Holthouse Boys & Girls Club in Houston Thursday.

“It’s awesome that I get to work with and around these two,” Ulmer said while sitting next to Foster and Quin, according to the Houston Chronicle. “They’re very smart. I learned a lot from them in the past couple of hours. I’m very happy that I’m able to work with them and they invested in my company and them helping us and mentoring us and believing in our mission. I think we have a better chance of achieving our goals. That keeps me pumped and excited every day.”

Mikaila, who also charmed $60,000 out of those temperamental sharks on ABC’s “Shark Tank,” using her great-grandmother’s recipe of flaxseed sweetened with honey.

What really makes Mikaila our queen bee is her donating a portion of profits to preserve honey bee colonies.

 

Hold the Lemonade! Beyonce is Hooking up African Nation with Clean Water

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For a mom of three (two are newborns, mind you) Beyonce sure is busy.

When she’s not acting as silent producer on hubby Jay Z’ 4:44 album, Queen Bey is making it rain on an East African nation. Literally.

Beyonce is teaming up with UNICEF to provide clean drinking water to remote parts of Burundi through her BeyGOOD philanthropy org.

To help half a million people get access to clean water donate

The BEYGOOD4BURUNDI, a multi-year partnership, includes the construction of new wells with hand pumps, hygiene courses and tips on improving the water supply in remote communities.

According to Look to the Stars, rural areas in Burundi, children are more at risk of malnutrition and water born diseases with tainted H20.

Sadly more than 65 percent use unclean water in the remote parts of Burundi and have to travel great distances for the water.

Beyonce is hoping to change that.

“Access to water is a fundamental right. When you give children clean and safe water, you don’t just give them life, you give them health, an education, and a brighter future. I am committed to helping drive lasting solutions to the water crisis in Burundi,” said Beyoncé.

Anyone else having deja vu? The Carters love their water…here’s hoping Flint is next on the list.

Can I get an amen?

Jay Z Joins Effort to Bail Out 100 Dads for Father’s Day

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Jay Z with Kalief Browder

It’s a Father’s Day 100 Dads won’t soon forget.

Because they’ll get to spend it with their kids instead of cell mates. All thanks to new father of three (you prob haven’t heard) Jay Z, backing Color of Change’s fundraising effort to bail out 100 Dads today.

The racial justice org did the same thing last month for moms.

Sadly it’s needed given that one in 9 children have a parent behind bars. A truth bomb Jay Z launched in his penned TIME article, For Father’s Day, “I’m Taking on the Exploitative Bail Industry.

In the think piece Jay Z shares the heartbreaking reality of being locked up with no way out:

 If you’re from neighborhoods like the Brooklyn one I grew up in, if you’re unable to afford a private attorney, then you can be disappeared into our jail system simply because you can’t afford bail. Millions of people are separated from their families for months at a time — not because they are convicted of committing a crime, but because they are accused of committing a crime.

And why the rap mogul has made it his mission to take on the exploitation of the bail bond industry:

 …when I helped produce this year’s docuseries, Time: The Kalief Browder Story, I became obsessed with the injustice of the profitable bail bond industry. Kalief’s family was too poor to post bond when he was accused of stealing a backpack. He was sentenced to a kind of purgatory before he ever went to trial. The three years he spent in solitary confinement on Rikers ultimately created irreversible damage that lead to his death at 22.

The sad reality of nearly 700,000, on any given day, that get locked up without a conviction or a way to pay for their freedom.

Thankfully, there are some that found a way out today.

Happy Father’s Day!!