Russell Simmons Donates 100 Percent of Clothing Line Profits to Black Empowerment

Russell Simmons and Kanye West want to change the fashion industry, but have conflicting ways on doing it. Photo Courtesy: unclerush instagram

Russell Simmons and Kanye West want to change the fashion industry, but have conflicting ways on doing it.
Photo Courtesy: unclerush instagram

Hip-Hop mogul Russell Simmons is putting his money where his mouth is.

Earlier this month the yogi took to Instagram to gripe about minorities not getting a fair shake within the fashion industry. Somewhere Kanye West is rolling his eyes and saying “duh.”

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But instead of storming on an established designer’s runway and claiming to have the best line of all time. Or ranting at a music concert, Russell decided to take all,I mean every last cent he makes with his Arglyeculture line he sells at Macys and donate it to Black empowerment.

“I want to help create space for more black designers to have access to sell their lines in big American department stores,” he writes on Instagram.

In another Instagram post he writes about donating profits to black empowerment designers and education programs. And giving neighborhood antiviolence programs a cut as well.

It wouldn’t hurt to have more faces of color being on the stage, rather than in the audience.

IF YOU BLINKED Woman Crush | Mo’ne Davis Creates Kicks for Charity

Mo'ne Davis holding her newly unveiled sneaker collection.  Photo Courtesy: ShoesbyMade Instagram

Mo’ne Davis holding her newly unveiled sneaker collection.
Photo Courtesy: ShoesbyMade Instagram

moshoes

Mo is reinventing the throw like a girl stereotype. Photo Courtesy: shoesbymade instagram

As if we needed another reason to love Mo’ne Davis. The Little League legend gives us one more. The 13-year-old is creeping into pro athlete territory by releasing a custom sneaker–with a baseball styled stitch–that will benefit other young girls like herself.

I never thought at the age of 13 I’d be a role model, but having young girls look up to me is pretty cool!

ESPN reports Mo is working with shoe company M4D3 and the “Because I am a Girl” initiative to unveil a limited edition sneaker collection, which 15 percent of sales will go towards helping impoverished girls.

As if that’s not enough. Mo has a memoir in the works.

Girls really do run the world.

Struttin’ For Charity: Naomi Campbell Hosts Fashion Show For Ebola Relief

In between sashaying down several runways for New York Fashion Week and promoting Fox’s “Empire,” (she plays a cougar,if you’re wondering) Naomi Campbell threw her own fashion show on Saturday.

The iconic supermodel gathered her famous friends–Tyson Beckford, Mary J. Blige, Rosario Dawson, Cassie, Paris Hilton, Kelly Osbourne and Michelle Rodriguez–to slay the “Fashion For Relief” runway in New York.

The charity show is to raise awareness and dollars for Ebola relief. Yes, Ebola is still relevant despite it not being reported on the news. Yes, the fight against Ebola still matters, and so does the Bring Back Our Girls campaign. Remember that?

I digress. Naomi Campbell will hold a second “Fashion for Relief” show tomorrow during London Fashion Week.

Supermodel Naomi Campbell Opens Pop-Up Shop for Ebola Relief

naomifashionforreliefNaomi is not letting that fierce runway walk go to waste, she’s using her stellar strut to raise awareness for Ebola relief.

The supermodel is putting together a number of fashion shows to raise money to treat the deadly disease that’s devastating West African countries.

And that’s not all. Naomi is also opening a charity shop at Westfield London Mall where she’s hocking her own merch (you know that gear is fleek.) and some of her model pals’ stuff too.

Naomi had this to say about her fashion meets charitable efforts:

“I’m incredibly excited to return to Westfield London to launch the pop-up store. Raising awareness of Ebola and educating on its prevention its crucial to help prevent the spread of this deadly disease. We hope the Fashion for Relief store will contribute to the much needed funds and awareness, while offering people the unique chance to bag some stunning designer outfits and accessories.”

For the lucky London towners that can take advantage of this worthy cause, take note, it’s only available from November 28th to December 4th.

Philanthropy is a nice color on this iconic beauty. As is the other celebs–Idris, Alicia Keys–lending their voice to end the stigma of Ebola being a death sentence in a PSA video below.

To donate to the Ebola Survival Fund click here

Kerry Washington Uses Fashion to Spotlight Domestic Abuse

kwpurpleNew York Fashion Week may be kaput, but “Scandal” star Kerry Washington introduced the hottest accessory for a woman’s safety. The purple purse.  The tasseled, chain-strapped purse was  designed by Olivia Pope  Kerry herself, and Vanna White debuted yesterday at Allstate Foundation’s Purple Purse Challenge. Fashion aside, this purse carries a strong message for any woman or girl suffering financial abuse, a little known form of domestic abuse where a partner uses money to control a spouse’s freedom.

In light of the tsunami-sized public uproar over NFL players Ray Rice and Adrian Peters alleged physical abuse cases, now is as good a time as any to jumpstart a convo about a form of abuse that is very rarely talked about. To bring you up to speed, financial domestic abuse is experienced in 98% of abusive relationships and is cited as the top reason for why victims stay in unhealthy  relationships, according to the National Network to End Domestic Violence.

It starts by slowly pulling away a woman’s purse strings, until she’s financially trapped.

“When the victim finally realizes she wants to take back some control, she often can’t. That whole hashtag #WhyIStayed that happened last week, you saw how many of those responses were about feeling trapped financially,” Washington, the purple purse ambassador told The Huffington Post.

KERRYWASHINGTONPURPLEPURSE

The Allstate Foundation’s Purple Purse Challenge aims to take back the power stolen from these women by using the handbag (adorned the color of domestic abuse awareness) to be a topic of conversation. As well as a source of funds for charities advocating for domestic abuse victims.

So, here’s how it works, when you donate $10 or more, you will enter a daily drawing to win one of three purple purses Ms. Washington designed. There will be three winners every day. You can enter here and for those that prefer email: purplepurse@crowdrise.com with the subject line “Please enter me in the sweepstakes-Win a Purple Purse.” In the email include all your contact info. You have until October 3rd to enter.

So far the purple purse challenge has taken in over $500k in donations. I guess survivors of domestic abuse are in good hands….sorry, couldn’t help myself. To learn about other charitable pursuits the Allstate Foundation contributes to click here.

And if you or someone you know is a victim of domestic abuse and need help, know that you are not alone. Go to a safe place and contact the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE for help, because no one deserves to be abused.

MODEL EFFECT: Jourdan Dunn Named Ambassador for Sickle Cell Association

sicklecellawareness

It’s sickle cell awareness month and to raise awareness for this overlooked disease–that more of us suffer from than you think–we’re highlighting a model spokesperson. No, literally!! Jourdan Dunn was tapped by Sickle Cell Disease Association of America to be their ambassador.

What does the gorg supermodel that slays fashion runways and a Beyoncé vid have in common with a debilitating illness affecting red blood cells?

To erase those thought bubbles from your head, here are a few good reasons Jourdan Dunn wasn’t just a pretty face for the Association: She tells Vogue she carries the sickle cell gene and passed it onto her four-year-old son, Riley.

jdunnandsonShe knew he would get the illness but still was heartbroken when she received the diagnosis. But swallowed her guilt and put on her brave face to deal with the reality.

Now she’s educating others through her Cell for Gratitude charity initiative. She already put her fashion skills to good use by designing a cell necklace in which proceeds go to the Association.

dunnandfriendsAnd rallied famous friends–Rihanna, Naomi Campbell, Alek Wek, Karlie Kloss and Cara Delevingne–to her “Cell for Gratitude” launch during New York Fashion Week.

I don’t want people to feel sorry for my son or me. I’m not ashamed about sickle cell anemia. I want to talk about it because there are a lot of people in the industry who have sickle cell or who have a family member that has it, but they don’t talk about it. Many others don’t know if they even carry the gene.

Unlike normal blood cells that are round, those with sickle cells are oval shaped. And when the blood cells are clogged–due to infection or body temp changes–it triggers unbearable pain.

Jourdan says her goal as Association ambassador is to brush off the shame of the illness and get people talking.

I want people who have it to speak up because sickle cell anemia isn’t something to be ashamed of. There are other people dealing with it, and we shouldn’t turn a blind eye.

For those itching to contribute to this under-the-radar cause blood donations are greatly appreciated. To see if you qualify to give, click here

To read a full version of the Vogue article click here

CHARITABLE CONTRIBUTION: Beyonce Opens Wallet for Chime for Change Charity

Image Courtesy: Chime for Change

Image Courtesy: Chime for Change

Beyoncé definitely wanted to leave a mark on the one year anniversary of Chime for Change‘s launch, and the $500 G check she donated will surely be a reminder she was there. That is at the GUCCI store in NY last night basking in the revelry of another year, as co-founder of the org,  helping young women be empowered with the org’s over 300 projects related to health, education and career counseling services across the globe.

This time last year she was slaying the stage for a good cause, this go ’round she was head-bopping to beats her lil sis Solange was churning out. In other words there was nothing but good vibes flowing through the store.

Bey’s half a milly handout will be spread out to three major parts of Chime for Change: $125 Gs will go towards educating 100 Kenyan girls; another $125 Gs will be used for over 300 infant items throughout Sub-Saharan African countries; the remaining quarter million will be split between youth leadership and mentoring programs in NYC and supporting 25 human trafficking survivors with recovery treatments in LA.

Money well spent, Bey.

FASHION FRIDAY: Savannah James, Wife of LeBron James, Hosts Second Annual Prom Promise Event I Actor Jason Weaver Promotes Tees Benefiting South Sudan Survivors

Savannah James caters to  50 girls dress needs with Prom Promise Event in Akron, OH.  Image Courtesy: Facebook

Savannah James caters to 50 girls dress needs with Prom Promise Event in Akron, OH.
Image Courtesy: Facebook

The penultimate glam milestone in a girl’s life is finding the dress memorable enough to recall prom at a future granddaughters’ request. And not only did Mrs.  LeBron James aka Savannah James hook up 50 lucky Akron, Ohio girls with pretty frocks, she  loaned them her stylist for the second annual Prom Promise event (associated with LeBron James Family Foundation.)  Stylist Alicia had a one-on-one consultation with each girl and gave a lecture on personal style and confidence.

Alicia giving ladies style tips. Image Courtesy: Facebook

Alicia giving ladies style tips.
Image Courtesy: Facebook

Cleveland.com reported Savannah established the Prom Promise event to boost young girls self-esteem and give  prom preparation to those in need. She released this statement:

I know how challenging life can be for young girls trying to find their way in high school, so this is a way for me to really connect with them during a special time in their lives and encourage them to embrace their beauty, knowledge and strength. LeBron and I are blessed to be in a position to give back to our hometown, and I feel a responsibility to help others comes with that. I believe strongly in empowering others, and, through this event, I hope to boost these girls’ self-esteem and give them confidence that they can be anything they want to be if they work hard and believe.

savannahdresses   Not only will the lucky ladies go home with a new dress, but Savannah also threw in Beats By Dre Headphones and an I Promise souvenir wristbands modeled after what NBA superstar LeBron James wears. Savannah takes Prom Promise event to Miami in April. To donate gently used or brand new dresses to the event send them to LRMR Management Offices 3800 Embassy Parkway, Suite 360, Akron, Ohio, 44333.

FASHION FRIDAY: Actor Jason Weaver dished on his designer friend’s new line of T-shirts that are raising awareness for the civil war in Sudan. Any tee’s purchased from this website, 10% of money will go towards “Joining Hands for South Sudan,” an org that doles out basic necessities  to women and children affected by the war.

teeshirt Here’s what Jason wrote on his Instagram about the T-shirt designer:

I wanted to take some time out to inform y’all of something that I think is pretty important and a worthy cause. Check it out.. My good friend and brother @de3ng has started a campaign to raise awareness about the civil war occurring in his homeland of Sudan. Deng is an amazing brother who has triumphed over many obstacles in his life prior to him coming to the United States and he is now a respected figure in the ATL fashion community.

Pharrell Tips Hat Towards ‘From One Hand To Another’ Non-Profit

Pharrell being eaten by the smokey the bear hat. Image Courtesy: Facebook

Pharrell being eaten by the smokey the bear hat.
Image Courtesy: Facebook

It’s the accessory on everyone’s lips this award season. And made more famous by Pharrell than this OG. Yet, the singer/producer is  known more for starting fires than putting them out, ahem, remember the “happy” blaze he caused at the stiffest, staunchest award show? Here’s a reminder. But this time he’s tipping the hat towards an even better cause. The Vivienne Westwood hat has been auctioned off on ebay with funds going towards Pharrell’s From One Hand to Another non-profit that supports Pharrell Williams Resource Center, a community resource center for underprivileged youth ranging from age 7 to 20 in his hometown of Virginia Beach.

Pharrell chillin with 9-year-old Poppy who shoots and edits her own music videos. Image Courtesy: Facebook

Pharrell chillin with 9-year-old Poppy who shoots and edits her own music videos. Image Courtesy: Facebook

The resource center aims to set up programs that will teach science, technology, engineering, arts, math and motivation to at risk kids. The center also offers life coaches and tutoring and motivation lessons to children.

The infamous hat sold for $44,100.00 after only 11 days on ebay. The first two days of bidding garnered $15,000. As a result 250 lucky kids will be traipsing off to one of 9 summer innovation camps Pharrell has under his From One Hand to Another non-profit.

I think the only thing to top this is Miley’s foam finger…no, that would just be a very, very bad idea. Ugghhh.

Usher’s Ex-Wife Tameka Raymond Holds Flea Market to Benefit Kile’s World Foundation

Tameka Raymond with son Kile.  Photo Credit: Kile's World Foundation

Tameka Raymond with son Kile.
Photo Credit: Kile’s World Foundation

If you’re in the Atlanta area this weekend, please be sure to hit up Tameka Raymond’s—Usher’s ex-wife– flea T market. While rummaging through deals on clothes, shoes and baby items, know the real treasure lies in these proceeds going towards Kile’s World Foundation created in 2013.

T-market flier. 80% discount on furniture...girl, bye Photo Credit: Tameka Raymond IG

T-market flier. 80% discount on furniture…girl, bye
Photo Credit: Tameka Raymond IG

The foundation is in memory of Tameka’s 11-year-old son that died nearly two years ago from a jet skiing accident. Kile’s World Foundation sets up summer camp activities to educate kids on the arts–theater, music, dance, painting, media and singing–that were passions of young Kile.

Come out tomorrow to get a 80% deal on some Loubou’s while keeping Kile’s memory alive.

IF YOU BL==NKED:  Hot off the presses, USA Today is reporting that the death trial involving Kile Glover has ended with a guilty verdict for Jeffrey Hubbard, who operated the boat that collided with Usher’s stepson while jet skiing on Lake Lanier in Atlanta in 2012, that includes reckless operation of a vessel and homicide by vessel.