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10 Philanthropic Facts You May Not Know About Tupac Shakur

Afeni-Tupac-Shakur

“Measure a man by his actions fully from the beginning to the end. Don’t take a piece out of my life or a song out of my music and say this is what I’m about because you know better than that.” – Tupac Shakur

Tupac Shakur accomplished a lot before his murder at the age of 25. Beyond his industry rivals, complex persona, and entertainment career this iconic artist had another side that’s been widely overlooked. As the child that wrote his own family plays, and the son of community activist, Afeni Shakur, he had a natural compassion for helping disadvantaged youth. To honor his humanitarianism, AllHipHop  wanted to share some philanthropic acts that went under the radar.

Here are 10 philanthropic facts, you may have not known about Tupac Shakur:

1. TUPAC & JOSHUA

tupan-and-boy
In 1993, Tupac received a letter from the parents of a dying boy, named Joshua. They said it was Joshua’s last wish to meet Tupac. Tupac flew to Maryland to meet Joshua and took him to a basketball game. Soon after Joshua’s death Tupac renamed his publishing company from Ghetto Gospel Music to Joshua’s Dream.

2. TUPAC’S CELEBRITY YOUTH FOOTBALL LEAGUE

Before his death, Tupac was in the works of developing a Celebrity Youth Football League. Each celebrity involved would sponsor a youth sports team, by buying uniforms and hiring a staff of coaches.

3. A PLACE CALLED HOME

Tupac put together a benefit concert to help a growing non-profit organization, A Place Called Home, raise money for a new building. Founded in 1993, A Place Called Home is a safe haven in South Central LA where at risk youth are empowered to take ownership of the quality and direction of their lives through programs in education.
http://www.apch.org/

4. TUPAC’S SPECIAL BBQ

Through his bodyguard, Tupac heard about a 14-year old girl who was paralyzed from the waist down and confined to a wheelchair after a terrible car accident. Tupac called the Make-A-Wish Foundation to inquire about this little girl. During the phone call, Pac learned the girl was scheduled to meet her celebrity idol, but the celebrity canceled just before the meeting date. Tupac stepped in and flew the girl and her aunt to California to join him on the set of “Gridlock’d.”
Afterwards he took them to the recording studio and later hosted a personal BBQ cookout at his house in honor of her.
Tupac later donated a brand new audio system to her school.

5.  TUPAC GOES TO THE PROM

tupac_prom

A Tupac fan wrote a letter to his fan club, asking the late rapper to be her prom date. About a month later, Tupac showed up at her doorstep. He came inside the home and talked to her family and offered to purchase her prom dress & escort her to the dance. Before leaving her home, Tupac gave the family $1500.

When her prom day came, Tupac arrived in a limo to pick up his fan. At the school function Tupac signed autographs, took photos, and even got on the dance floor with her for five songs before he left.

6. TUPAC RACES TO THE EMERGENCY ROOM

PAC_CHAIR

During a promo tour stop in Washington, DC, as Tupac was on his way back to the airport, he heard on the radio about a young girl who was in the emergency room after being attacked and mauled by a dog. Tupac told the driver to turn around and take him to the hospital where the young girl was located. He stayed with her and her family until she fully recovered.

7. TUPAC STARTS PETITION TO KEEP COMMUNITY CENTER OPEN

In his early teens, Tupac solicited people to sign a petition to keep a community recreation center open. After accumulating a significant number of signatures the building was torn down anyway in spite of his efforts. This experience helped cultivate Tupac’s vision for a center that would provide a positive environment where young people could learn skills and performing arts. He wanted to call the center Thug Mansion. After his early death, his mother maintained the vision by opening the Tupac Amaru Shakur Foundation in Stone Mountain, Georgia.

8. PUSHED UNITY BEYOND SO-CALLED EAST COAST/WEST COAST BEEF

Tupac was often accused of instigating war between coasts, but there’s plenty evidence to the contrary.  In 1996, Pac invited the Boot Camp Clik, the Brooklyn Hip-Hop  collective, to record The One Nation album at his summer mansion. The album has never been released, but the effort was definitely there before his death. Furthermore, Pac had rock solid relationships with East Coast folks like Busta Rhymes and Treach from Naughty By Nature. Not exactly philanthropy, but definitely for the greater good.

9. TUPAC’S PARTNERSHIP WITH J COLE

He may not be here in the flesh, but his work continues on.

The Tupac Amaru Shakur Foundation and J Cole’s Dreamville Foundation recently joined forces and started a youth book club in North Carolina. The first book read and discussed was, A Rose that Grew from Concrete. Tupac’s non-profit organization recently celebrated 15 years of serving the community. The center teaches vocal training, ballet, jazz, recording & engineering, theater and creative writing. The nonprofit is still spearheaded by Afeni Shakur. Other family members including Tupac’s sister are active volunteers and staff.

10.  TUPAC’S C.O.D.E FOUNDATION

ERICA FORD is a world renowned youth advocate and the founder of LIFE Camp Inc., a non-profit organization dedicated to preventing youth violence and providing empowerment opportunities for youth who are educationally, economically and socially disadvantaged. Throughout her twenty-plus years as a community leader, Erica has impacted the lives of hundreds of thousands of Black and Latino Youth in over 100 prisons, dozens of New York City Housing projects and hundreds of schools and community-based programs across the country and around the world. A Queens, NY native and graduate of CUNY’s York College with a Baccalaureate Degree in Political Science, Erica’s work as an activist began in 1986 as a student, where she served as President of the Black Student Caucus, Vice President of the evening Student Government, and led a successful student takeover to protest tuition increases. One of the most diligent and effective activists of her generation, Erica is widely respected by government officials, civic leaders, local media and the hip hop community. Mayor Michael Bloomberg has commended her for her dedication to reducing violence among young New Yorkers. Reverend Al Sharpton has acknowledged her organization as “one of the best in the nation.” Former Governor David Paterson presented her with an official proclamation in honor of her first annual Peace Week in 2010, which resulted in a cease of gun violence for the entire week in two high crime areas – East New York Brooklyn and South Jamaica Queens. Additionally, over 1,000 men across New York City signed up to become volunteer “Peace Keepers,” to support violence reduction efforts and provide positive male role models for teens and young adults. Among countless accolades, Erica has received citations, proclamations and awards from State Senators, Congressmen, Borough Presidents and other elected officials. KISS FM (NY) honored her as one of its Phenomenal Women and the NY Knicks honored her with their Community Service Award. Her tireless efforts have also been celebrated in numerous print, television, radio and internet outlets, including BET News, The New York Times, New York Daily News and Amsterdam News, among many, many others. Erica’s key to effectiveness is her ability to build partnerships between the public and private sectors, to collaborate around the issue of youth violence. Also known as the “Hip Hop Activist,” she partnered with the late Tupac Shakur in 1994 to develop The Code, a foundation designed to decrease Black on Black crime. In 1998 - 1999, The Code Foundation played a key role in the organization of the Million Youth March, which brought tens of thousands of youth from all over the United States together to rally against injustices and focus on youth issues. In 2002, she collaborated with Grammy award-winning hip hop artist, Ja Rule and others to establish LIFE Camp Inc., from which the I Love My LIFE campaign was developed, to assist youth in making critical choices which prevent them from becoming perpetrators or victims of youth violence. Erica’s work has not been limited to the United States. In 1991, she facilitated a cultural awareness trip for youth leaders to the Dominican Republic. In 1993, she traveled to Geneva, Switzerland as a Youth Delegate Representative of the International Association Against Torture. As a delegate, she attended the United Nations Commission’s conference on Human Rights, where she spoke on the violation of human rights of Black youth in the United States. In 1995, she brought a group of youth delegates to the International Youth and Student Conference in Havana, Cuba. During that same year, she attended the United Nations World Conference on Women in Beijing, China. While there, Erica and others successfully lobbied to have women’s issues placed on the international agenda. In 1998, Erica attended the World Federation of Youth conference in Kampala Uganda. In 2001, she organized a group of young people to attend the United Nations World Conference Against Racism in South Africa. With a wealth of experience and community support behind her, Ford ran for political office in 2008. Of the seven that ran for New York City Council seat (District 27 in Queens), Erica came in 3rd, an impressive impact for the first time candidate. Currently, Erica is working to expand her I Love My LIFE / Peace Week initiative to the cities that have the highest rate of youth violence across the country, including: Camden, NJ, Detroit, MI, Compton, CA, Dallas, TX, Chicago, IL, Baltimore, MD, Philadelphia, PA, Washington, DC and Atlanta, GA, to name a few. http://www.lifecampinc.com

From June 1994 to April 2002, Ms. Erica Ford ran Tupac’s Code Foundation even after the rapper had passed away. Erica, Tupac, and his stepfather Mutulu Shakur, established The Code in 1994. The mission was simply to keep young people out of jail and to decrease “Black on Black” crime.

TO DONATE TO THE TUPAC AMARU FOUNDATION PLEASE VISIT:
http://www.crowdrise.com/TupacAmaruShakurFoundation

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