Editor’s note: This article contains social media posts that some may find offensive.
Hip-hop artist the Game wants his celebrity peers to put their money where their mouths are. All of the uproar about Flint, Mich.’s water crisis is a first step toward addressing the injustice, but actually donating money so that the residents of Flint can gain access to clean water is where the Game’s head is currently at.
The rapper posted a screenshot on Instagram of a $500,000 wire transfer from his nonprofit group, the Robin Hood Project, to Avita, the bottled-water company.
He explained in other posts that the money would be used to send Flint residents bottles of water. During an interview with the Daily Beast, he explained why this tragedy hits close to home and why he felt compelled to give as much as he could.
“It’s obviously a very big deal and a tragedy in Flint, and I saw people donating small amounts, and I just thought I’d go above and beyond that,” he said. “So I donated the funds from the first 11 shows of my European tour."
What’s even more promising is that Avita has vowed to match the Game’s contribution, which means that his donation comes out to $1 million in donated water that Flint residents can expect because of the rapper’s goodwill and initiative.
“Avita matched it, and there’ll be 1 million bottles of water given out—33,000 bottles of water at a time, because of trucking and shipping it in and out. It’s not easy shipping it out because of the snowstorms, and trucks being backed up. But we’ll get it there, however long it takes," he explained.
And then there’s the personal side of why he cares so much about what’s happening in Flint.
“My sister lives in Flint with my nieces and nephews and her husband, and so it directly affected me,” he said. “I’ve got friends who are still stuck there, too. I’ve been on tour in Europe for weeks and weeks, and I wanted to do something. I try to do the best I can from wherever I am.”
The rapper also called out other celebrities who he feels haven’t given as much as they could.
“The only reason I mentioned Madonna and [Jimmy] Fallon is I follow Madonna on Twitter and saw it on my feed, and I saw, ‘Ten-thousand dollars,’” he said. “Madonna? Come on, man. She’s paid it forward her whole life, though, adopting kids and donating money. But specifically to the water crisis in Flint, we can do better than $10,000. It takes about nine bottles per person per day to bathe and drink, so $10,000 contributes, but they could’ve done a lot more.”
Hats off to the Game for how involved he is, and how passionate he is about corralling support for Flint.
Diana Ozemebhoya Eromosele is a staff writer at The Root and the founder and executive producer of Lectures to Beats, a Web series that features video interviews with scarily insightful people. Follow Lectures to Beats on Facebook and Twitter.