This Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Nom was Spotted Feeding Homeless in LA

The jury might be out on whether she’s officially a certified rock legend. (Psst… issa yes, no matter what’s decided) There’s no doubt she is our queen of hearts or wcw for giving back.

Chaka Khan. Yes, hunty The.Chaka. Khan. rolled up her sleeves and got her hands dirty (mostly with mayo and mustard) over the weekend to make sandwiches for Brown Bag Lady; charity that feeds the homeless in LA’s Skid Row neighborhood.

Chaka Khan helped make over 200 brown bag lunches to hand out to homeless on Sunday.

When Chaka Khan wasn’t packing croissant sandwiches, the “Sweet Thing” singer took pics and signed a microphone for her littlest fan.

Brown Bag Lady Founder Jaqueline Norvell couldn’t contain her excitement that a living legend was in her house.

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FIRST SUNDAY WAS AMAZING! ❤️🧡💜 We made over 200 brown bag lunches. We laughed and danced and the energy in my home was off the charts 💥EXCITING!💥 We caravanned down to Skid Row and we handed out sleeping bags and backpacks full of toiletries, shoes and clothes. @kgsuperstar and @stylistinge stood on that pavement cutting head after head…for free. And every step of the way the one and only Miss @chakaikhan was right by our side. 🙌🏽🧡🙌🏽 Laughing and joking with the homeless and when they realized …WAIT! You REALLY are Chaka Khan!!… she laughed and was so gracious taking picture after picture. Twas a damn good day. A day I will never forget as long as I live! 🙌🏽🙏🏽🙌🏽🙏🏽🙌🏽 Thank you @gary_gotchadigi for making this happen. #FirstSunday #GivingBack #BackPacks #Toiletries #BottledWater #Clothes #Shoes #aSmile #aHug #Homeless #WeSeeYou #WeAreInThisTogether #BrownBagLady

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Jaqueline is all of us.

Oprah Joins Fight to End Hunger

Oprah was fresh off a Parisian vacay, when THE media mogul spread some Black girl magic in Cincinnati.

Oprah shocked volunteers at Freestore Foodbank on Sept. 11th when she came suited and booted to help pack 2,000 meals for school kids in the community.

Oprah was one of 100 volunteers to support Kroger grocery store’s Kroger Zero Hunger, Zero Waste anniversary that aims to end hunger and food waste by 2025.
“It’s an honor to support this initiative in the local Cincinnati community and beyond,” said Winfrey. “I am committed to the fight against hunger because I’ve seen the impact it has on people. That’s why I wanted to be here today to help pack food for Cincinnati children facing hunger. The work Kroger is doing is special and meaningful.”

The cherry on top of the event was…no, Gayle didn’t come. Next time, guys.

Oprah’s food line O, That’s Good! teamed up with Kroger to donate one million meals to Feeding America to feed families around the country.

Oprah stands undefeated as the giving God. Fight me on this.

Beyonce and Jay Z Make These Students Dreams Come True

Beyonce and Jay Z weren’t kidding about their promise to upgrade us. The power couple did just that for three high school seniors this past week.

During their OTR II tour stop in Orlando, forever hype man DJ Khalid announced the first three recipients of the BeyGood Initiative and Shawn Carter Foundation’s tour scholarship, which awards $100K to each student to go toward college enrollment.

Congrats to Keshawn Morgan. He’s more than deserving of that $100K bag with # 3 ranking of his class at Evans High School and president of Spanish Honor Society.

A day earlier in Atlanta, Beyonce and Jay Z awarded Karissa Jackson with scholarship for her community service work and 3.8 GPA at Discovery High School. Thanks to the Carters’, Karissa will be joining Kennesaw University’s 2019 class.

She told Gwinnett Daily Post that she was blown away by the scholarship.

“I had no idea I was going to get that. It’s really exciting and I couldn’t stop crying because it’s really a blessing to awarded something like this.”

The next student to go Apeshit over Jay Z and Beyonce’s generosity is Emily Geray from Miami Beach High School.

Emily will take her talents and award money to study criminology at Florida International University.

And the Carters’ are just getting started. They are dropping scholarship money in Arlington, Phoenix, LA, San Diego, New Orleans, Houston, Santa Clara and Seattle. Boys and Girls Club members are nominated for the scholarship award.

If you need another reason to see this tour, black excellence is def one of them.

Taraji P. Henson Launches Foundation for Mental Health to Honor Her Father

Any Daddy’s girls out there? Y’all gonna love this one.

In between planning a wedding and portraying fierce Cookie Lyon on Empire, our girl Taraji created a foundation that will address mental health issues in the Black community.

The Boris Lawrence Henson Foundation will provide scholarships to students majoring in mental health field; offer mental health counseling services in urban schools; and help to decrease prison recidivism rates.

The Foundation is named after her late Dad because of his complete devotion to her she told People

I named the organization after my father because of his complete and unconditional love for me; his unabashed ability to tell the truth, even if it hurt; and his strength to push through his own battles with mental health issues.

If you thumbed through Taraji’s 2016 memoir, Around the Way Girl, (I did!) you will remember she recounted her dad’s struggles to re-enter society after coming back from Vietnam. She says the Foundation is the best way to be a helping hand to those currently struggling.

My dad fought in the Vietnam War for our country, returned broken, and received little to no physical and emotional support. I stand now in his absence, committed to offering support to African Americans who face trauma daily, simply because they are black.

The Foundation will officially launch on September 22nd.

Let’s hope Taraji’s effort will create a big crack in mental health stigma in the Black community.

Langston Hughes Legacy Revived Through Arts Collective

So, I’m killing two birds with one stone on this post, actually three because I love doing the most.

Giving much deserved props to my fave poet–Langston Hughes–during National Poetry Month (check).

And featuring an arts collective org launched by Coretta Scott King Award winner. Introducing our other #WCW…Renee Watson.

The New York Times Bestselling author of “Piecing Me Together” was so inspired by Langston Hughes’ work she created “I, Too, Arts Collective” org (a nod to the iconic poem) in the scribe’s own Harlem brownstone.

Yes Ma’am!! The same parlor Langston used his famous typewriter, is now being occupied by kids taking part in African drumming and adult poetry readings.

It’s among the many creative programs offered by the non-profit, whose goal is to foster creativity within Harlem and sustain Langston’s legacy.

“This was a person that didn’t just write about Harlem, but loved Harlem,” Watson told CBS News.

What better way to repay that love affair than preserving the last creative space Langston Hughes worked in.

Through crowd sourcing and using hashtag #LangstonLegacy to get support, Watson was able to lease the brownstone in 2016.

The new goal is getting the collective to buy the building, which should’ve been a museum, anyway.

“There’s stories about Langston sitting in the parlor room with friends, and just talking politics, and talking about art, and we do that here. And so I hope that, yeah, if he knew it was going on, I think he would be proud. I feel like he’s cheering us on,” Watson said.

I am too.

Beyonce Donates to Young, Gifted and Black at HBCU’s

My edges have officially grown back, so that Beyonce can snatch them right off again come Saturday for Beychella 2.0.

Not only has the Queen of showtime put on the blackest of black performances celebrating…um…Black culture that wasn’t featured on an Apollo stage, Beyonce is donating to the cause.

Our girl is shelling out $100 Gs worth of scholarships at HBCU’s through her BEYGOOD charity initiative.

Xavier, Wilberforce, Tuskegee and Bethune-Cookman (sorry Howard, we know you needed that W) will receive $25K each for Homecoming Scholars Award Program.

Four students from each school can apply. Just like with the merit scholarship she debuted after release of Lemonade, students concentration has to be art based.

Winners will be announced this summer.

May your odds be as favorable as Beyonce’s killing the stage on Saturday. #Blackexcellence

In My DNA: First Black Woman to Grace Canadian Money

new-10-bill-unveiled-featuring-civil-rights-icon-viola-desmond-0

I got, I got, I got, I got/ Loyalty, got royalty inside my DNA/ Cocaine quarter piece, got war and peace inside my DNA/ I got power, poison, pain and joy inside my DNA/ I got hustle though, ambition, flow, inside my DNA

Sorry y’all, I can’t stop singing this Kendrick Lamar joint ever since I heard my cousin is the first Black woman to grace Canada’s $10 banknote.

Naturally, Viola Desmond is our WCW. For not only refusing to leave a white’s only section of a movie theater in the late ‘40s, but more importantly her defiance was the jump off to the civil rights movement, which led to the end of segregation in Nova Scotia.

For not only refusing to leave a white’s only section of a movie theater in the late ‘40s, but more importantly her defiance was the jump off to the civil rights movement, which led to the end of segregation in Nova Scotia.

No wonder out of more than 26,000 submissions, cousin Vi was selected as the Canadian woman reppin the new banknote.

Fair warning this post will be bias as a mofo, but I’m hoping you guys will indulge me in this proud moment.

Viola Desmond did for Canada what Rosa Parks did for us. Only she did it a decade before Rosa. My cuz Vi stumbled upon her role as a civil rights pioneer. Much like Rosa, she was sick and tired of being sick and tired. 

So this is how she landed in textbooks:

In 1946, Vi’s car broke down while traveling and had to stop in New Glasgow to get it fixed. To kill time, she went to the movies.

It was obvi segregated because it’s 1946—whites took the floor seats and Blacks were forced in the balcony section.

There was no way cousin Vi was getting a floor seat, so she paid for the balcony. Yet still sat in the white’s only section. My cousin.

She refused to leave and had to be dragged out of the theater by police. She spent 12 hours in the clink.

Cousin Vi was convicted and ordered to pay what amounted to $26 in fines. She fought the charges up until her death in 1965.

It wasn’t until 2010 the charges were dismissed by Nova Scotia’s first African Lieutenant general. “Here I am, 64 years later – a black woman giving freedom to another black woman,” Mayann Francis told Maclean’s magazine.

Yup that’s called black girl magic. Now get out and spend those Desmond’s.