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6 Rappers giving back

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Rap music is not always associated with positivity or humanitarian deeds. But behind the braggadocio raps about fast cars, women and money some of the most famous Hip Hop musicians, are using their money and influence, to help others in less fortunate circumstances. From providing electricity to opening up juice bars, their contributions demonstrate how creative one can be with their philanthropy.

Tinie Tempah
Starting off closest to home, earlier this year South London rapper Tinie Tempah spoke to the Sunday Times, about setting up a charity to provide financial support for graduates. With the job market becoming even more competitive and unpaid internships becoming prevalent, the charity will focus on preparing students and young people for employment. Tinie explained, “I am seeing that among the young people I know, so I have taken it upon myself to set up a charity to try to help them get the breaks”.

1. Tinie-Tempah

Akon: Lighting Africa
Okay Akon may not be a rapper, but his work in Africa makes him the most progressive and forward thinking person on this list. Spending most of his childhood in Senegal Akon is no stranger to the African continent, teaming up with Samba Bathily and Thione Niang ‘Lighting Africa’ “aims to develop an innovative solar-powered solution that will provide African villages with access to a clean and affordable source of electricity”. ‘Lighting Africa’ goes beyond providing electricity; it also seeks to provide employment and its Solar Academy teaches students how to use solar panels.

J. Cole
Forrest Hills Drive is J. Cole’s childhood home and also the name of his latest album. So it’s safe to assume this house means a lot to him, so much that he is willing to let single parent mothers, live there rent free for two year. Cole explained the plan to The Combat Jack Show, explaining “My goal is to have that be a haven for families … every two years, a new family will come in. They’ll live rent-free… I want her kids to feel how I felt when we got to the house”.

Jadakiss and Styles P
Having a healthy diet is very important and it can have a massive impact, on your lifestyle and frame of mind. Unfortunately many low-income communities are filled with fast food restaurants and cheap poor quality food. Aiming to tackle this problem Jadakiss and Styles P have teamed up to create ‘Juices for Life’, a chain of healthy juice bars, with its first location being set in the Bronx.

Jay Z 
In 2003 Jay Z and his mother Gloria Carter, established The Shawn Carter Foundation (SCF). Its mission is to “help individuals facing socio-economic hardships further their education at post-secondary institutions”. Last year several students from the London College of Communication (LCC) took part in a Cultural Exchange Programme, where LCC and SCF students received master classes at Roc Nation’s headquarters in New York City. Students from SCF also met MPs in The House of Lords and received lessons in broadcast journalism, screen printing and marketing.

5. Jay Z

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