Last week, Beyonce ventured to the poverty-stricken nation of Haiti, where she surveyed the damage and destruction that still plagues the country five years after a 7.0 magnitude earthquake hit. Bey alongside Valeria Amos, the United Nations’ humanitarian affairs chairwoman, met residents who were still recovering and was able to see firsthand all of the work that still needs to be done.
Though criticized for his underwhelming response to the recent Black Lives Matter movement, it looks like there has been some philanthropy going on behind the scenes! In a series of since-deleted tweets, Jay Z’s friend, writer and activist Dream Hampton, revealed that the rapper had bailed out dozens of Baltimore protestors. “We we needed money for bail for Baltimore protestors, I… hit Jay up, and I had for Ferguson, and he wired tens of thousands of dollars within minutes,” read one of the tweets.
Touching everything from the unemployed to the sick, Bey’s BeyGood foundation aims to make the world a more beautiful place. Her new initiative is currently raising money for the thousands in Nepal who were affected by the recent 7.8 magnitude earthquake. The superstar raised hundreds of thousands of dollars to fight for gender equality worldwide, given school supplies to students across the nation and hosted food drives in Houston (and she shows no sign of stopping!).
Jay rose to the occasion in 2008 after the three New York police officers were acquitted in the death of Sean Bell, an unarmed Black man who was fatally shot the day of wedding. As outrage among the Black community spread, Jay Z established a trust fund for Bell’s two children. The undisclosed amount of money is enough to fund the children’s college, should they choose to attend.
Teaming up with her parents, Solange and Kelly Rowland, Beyonce founded The Survivor Foundation in 2005 to offer assistance to those displaced by Hurricane Katrina. To accompany the inception of the foundation, Beyonce held food drives during her 2006 tour.
Founded in 2003, Jay Z’s Shawn Carter Foundation aimed to provide scholarship opportunities for disadvantaged youth and communities. The fund has paid out nearly $3 million in scholarship funds, study abroad opportunities, counseling programs and college visits.
In 2013, Beyonce partnered with Goodwill to tackle the unemployment crisis. “Goodwill helps people get back to work by providing education, job training and placement,” Beyonce said in a statement. “I wanted to team up with an organization that puts people first and works every day to help them improve and re-establish their lives,” Beyonce said. She encouraged her devoted Beyhive to donate clothes and electronics that would help disadvantaged people search for jobs.
While prepping for her role in Cadillac Records, the 2009 biopic detailing Etta James’ tumultuous life, Beyonce was introduced to Phoenix House, a rehabilitation center for recovering drug addicts. Bey became so enthralled with the organization that she donated her $4 million salary from the film to foundation, and went on to open an affiliated cosmetology school, which offers Phoenix House residents a seven-month training program to learn real-world skills.
The New York native returned to his Brooklyn roots in December after a grand jury declined to indict the officer responsible for the fatal chokehold that killed Eric Garner last July. Jay sat down with Gov. Andrew Cuomo to discuss reforming the criminal justice system. The rapper urged lawmakers to do a full examination of the broken system.
She may be queen of the world, but she’s not forgetting where she came from! Last year, it was uncovered that over the course of nearly 10 years, Bey had given to a homeless shelter in her hometown of Houston. In 2007, two years after Hurricane Katrina struck the gulf coast, Beyonce founded the Knowles-Temenos Place Apartments, a housing complex that offered a living space for 43 displaced individuals. As of last year, the singer had given $7 million to keep the complex running.