Many celebrities are lauded for their charity work and this month’s cover of Polo Lifestyles is graced by an exemplary celebrity philanthropist, Beyoncé. The ever-talented, singer, dancer, producer, and entrepreneur extraordinaire can also add impactful philanthropist to her list of accomplishments.
Among the earliest and most notable of Beyoncé’s efforts was in teaming up with her Destiney’s Child bandmate Kelly Rowland in responding to the massive destruction wrought by 2005’s Hurricane Katrina. The duo, along with Beyoncé’s mother, founded the Survivor Foundation that supported those affected by the storm with housing and other basic needs. Beyoncé also supported similar efforts when 2017’s Hurricane Harvey caused catastrophic flooding across parts of Texas, including in her hometown of Houston.
In 2008, Beyoncé took a turn – hailed by many as her best role ever – as the legendary Etta James in the film Cadillac Records. James had a very public and debilitating battle with heroin addiction for decades, prompting Beyoncé, in preparation for the role, to undertake a deeper understanding of addiction by spending two weeks at a drug rehabilitation center, Phoenix House. The impact was deep – Beyoncé donated her entire $4 million USD salary from the film to Phoenix House and she and her mother also went on to create a cosmetology school that offers the center’s residents a career path. Beauty indeed.
In 2013, Beyoncé and fellow celeb Selma Hayek worked with iconic brand Gucci to launch Chime for Change, a global effort to advance gender equality and to fight for the rights of women and girls. Since its founding, Chime for Change has raised $17.5 million USD for over 400 projects in 89 countries directly benefiting 570,000 women and girls.
More recently, Beyoncé has continued to bring her heart and philanthropy to the forefront of the twin pandemics of racial injustice and COVID-19.
Through her own foundation, BeyGOOD, COVID-19 testing, basic household needs and mental health services for those impacted by the pandemic were supported. They then launched the BeyGOOD Impact Fund with partner the NAACP to support small back-owned businesses. The Impact Fund was later extended to support those experiencing housing insecurity as a result of the pandemic.
Make no mistake…the superstar’s supercharged philanthropy is a hallmark of who she is and the causes she cares about in the world.