After her 10-month stay in prison, Lil’ Kim said she found a new mission–to help guide foster children in the right direction.
In an effort to spread awareness about the state of foster care, the Brooklyn rapper recently traveled to Washington, D.C. to speak and participate in the second annual Keeping the Promise to At-Risk Youth Conference.
Organized by Children Uniting Nations (CUN) and the University of Southern California’s School of Social Work, the annual forum aimed to highlight issues within the foster care system and implement mentoring programs and other educational services for foster children and at-risk youth.
“It’s not what happens to you, but how you handle it that matters,” Lil’ Kim said. “A lot of times, we all make bad choices, but it’s the experience that helps you make the right choice the next time.”
Workshop topics included the effects of mentoring on children’s self-esteem, psychological impacts of the child welfare system, and racial disparities in foster care.
“During that 10-month stay in prison I realized I had to become strongly involved in the children of our future so that they would not have to endure the struggles and pain that I had to go through during the difficult times in my life,” said Kim.
The rapper was joined at the conference by Senator John Kerry, Princess Dalal Al-Saud of Saudi Arabia, and Darryl “DMC” McDaniels of Hip-Hop group Run DMC at the day-long summit.
“Finding out I was adopted was a life changing and highly emotional event in my life,” DMC told AllHipHop.com. “I am now going through what millions of adopted, foster, and at-risk kids from [ages] 1 to 18 are going through, and I can’t forget the many of adults who have gone through and are where I am at this time of our lives.”
Children Uniting Nations is also currently working to sponsor a bill that would afford college students a break on their student loans if they become a mentor for the semester.