8 Rappers Who Helped People Less Fortunate


Rappers are often stereotyped as spending their money on houses, cars, parties, and women, but the truth is that they don't just have big wallets. They also have big hearts. 

Many rap artists have found ingenious ways to invest their money on much more than themselves and their loved ones. They're donating their money to causes they care about and people less fortunate. 

Here are 8 rappers who have been trying to make the world a better place:


1. Nas.

In 2013, Nas heard about a single father with eight children in need of some help. The father, Stanley Young, had lost his home in a fire. Young's wife had passed away the year before. After the fire, he and his eight children were living in a Holiday Inn when Nas heard about their situation. The rapper created a Crowdtilt campaign and raised over $60,000 for Young's housing. 

That wasn't the first time Nas found a way to help people in need. During his performance at Art Basel Miami in 2011, Nas picked up a paint brush and went to work. After a few strokes, he auctioned the piece off to a member of the audience for $14,000 and donated the money to charity. 

2. 50 Cent.

Combatting hunger is a cause close to 50 Cent's heart. He provide meals to underprivileged children with the sale of headphones.

3. Snoop Dogg.

Snoop Dogg has found ways to use both his talent and time as a means of helping those in need. He auctioned off time in the recording studio to raise money for Habitat for Humanity. He started a nonprofit youth football league that gives inner-city youth the opportunity to participate in football and cheerleading. He has even coached football for the league. Snoop also held a charity basketball game at his former high school—the proceeds were donated to both the school and the Save a Life foundation. 

Snoop partnered with the non-profit "Mind Gardens Project" to establish sustainable, organic community gardens around Jamaica. He has donated to many other organizations such as the Healing Circle, Orca Network, and the Shriners Hospital for Children. 

Most recently, Snoop Dogg participated in the "#ImUnloading" campaign as part of an Anti-Gun Violence PSA. You can watch that PSA here:

4. Big Sean.

A few weeks before his Hall of Fame album came out, rapper Big Sean previewed the album with one of his a biggest fans — 18-year-old Christian Ponisi. Ponisi was born with cerebral palsy which confines him to a wheelchair. Big Sean visited his home, met with his family, and described his inspiration behind each song on the album. 

He also started the Sean Anderson Foundation, a non-profit that assists in the education and well-being of kids in his hometown of Detroit. He has visited classrooms in Detroit to talk to students about reaching their goals.

5. Common.

Common established the Common Ground Foundation to help underprivileged communities and empower urban youth. The foundation provides underserved inner city youth with mentoring programs and creative art opportunities. It has also helped to expand the job opportunities for many teens in an effort to minimize violence. 

Common is also part of a movement that aims at preventing and spreading awareness about HIV and AIDS called "Knowing Is Beautiful."

6. Akon.

Akon recently announced that his ongoing initiative Akon Lighting Africa will focus on providing the 600 million people in Africa who Konfidence Foundation to improve the quality of life for impoverished families living in Africa and the United States.

7. Lil Wayne.

When he was growing up, Lil Wayne spend time playing in a park in New Orleans. After this park was destroyed during Hurricane Katrina, We Are The World" charity single that was released to help people in Haiti after a devastating earthquake. 

He has held benefit concerts, given out turkeys during Thanksgiving to people in his hometown every year, and even donated a wheelchair to a fan in need. 

8. Drake.

After Diane Sawyer aired a special on the violence that persistently affected Strawberry Mansion High School in Philadelphia, Drake decided to make an effort to help its students. He donated $75,000 to build a recording studio at the high school. His donation helped spark many other contributions to Strawberry Mansion. Twice the number of students were accepted to college the following year. 

Drake and fellow rapper The Game donated $22,5000 to an Ohio woman who lost her five children and boyfriend to a mobile home fire. The money was given to pay for their funerals. 

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Cover image via Shutterstock / Jamie Lamor Thompson.


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