Rihanna’s foundation donates $5 million to coronavirus fight

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Yesterday I wrote about the work that Ty Burrell and his wife are doing in Salt Lake City to help people who worked in the city’s restaurants and bars and are now out of work because of coronavirus-related shutdowns or because of the earthquake. Ty and his wife donated $100,000 to launch the Tip Your Server program that will give $2,000 grants to displaced employees. There have been many stories of celebrities making donations to nonprofits, and encouraging others to do the same. Rihanna has joined them, donating $5 million via her Clara Lionel Foundation (named for her grandparents) to organizations providing different kinds of aid during the coronavirus pandemic:

The foundation donated the money to Direct Relief, Feeding America, Partners in Health, The World Health Organization’s COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund and the International Rescue Committee, among others.

The foundation said its goal is “to immediately mobilize a broad response working with on-the-ground partners.”

The funds will go towards local food banks, accelerating testing in countries like Haiti and Malawi, and protective equipment for frontline health workers.

The donation will also help protect Native communities by providing them with resources to fight the virus.

[From CNN]

I feel like a broken record at this point, but these stories make this chaotic, dark time a bit more navigable. Celebrities shouldn’t have to donate huge sums of money, though. The federal government needs to get its act together, and the GOP needs to stop protecting corporations over citizens. On Monday, the total number of single-day deaths in the U.S. from the novel coronavirus reached triple digits for the first time as more than 100 people died. I got word that a family friend has been hospitalized. Stay home if you can, cover your coughs, and wash your hands. Please.

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Photos credit: Getty and Backgrid

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22 Responses to “Rihanna’s foundation donates $5 million to coronavirus fight”

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  1. Jo73c says:

    While I agree that governments should be governing more and managing the fair allocation of funds rather than lining their own pockets and protecting their dodgy mates, multi-millionaire celebrities and athletes should absolutely be contributing money. They’re just as much part of the 1% as their corporate counterparts. I’m not criticising Rhianna – good on her for getting involved. She’s just donated 0.83% of her current net worth, estimated at $600m.

    • Yoyo says:

      How do you know Rihanna is worth 600 million?

    • goofpuff says:

      Yes, Rihanna has definitely done more than many celebs and corporations. Though your percentage of her networth is deceptive. There’s no differentiation between actual liquid cash availability and worth locked in properties, investments, etc that she cannot draw from.

      • Jo73c says:

        Sure. I didn’t say I was expecting her to liquidate any investments, and I’m glad she’s trying to lead by example. I’m sure her actions will inspire some other celebrities to also make public donations. Merely commenting on Quimby’s assertion that we shouldn’t have to rely on celebs donating huge amounts of money.

        If more members of ‘the 1%’ were putting money back into society and the economy, then they wouldn’t be sitting on 99% of the world’s cash and assets waiting to dole it out in donations when it suits their PR strategy.

  2. OriginalLala says:

    Celebs are businesses though – they have benefited from the capitalist, pro-greed, pro-business economy while sucking up alot of resources. They should absolutely be giving back considering this pandemic will affect those without their $$, power and privilege in much worse ways.

    • Starfish says:

      Happy to see, but hopefully not another slush fund that everyday working people will never see a dime. Write personal checks to people, quit donating to organizations. imo

  3. Suzieq359 says:

    Love her! Plain and simple. She’s stepped up and is leading by example.

  4. Astrid says:

    keep the good stories coming in these dark times.

  5. adastraperaspera says:

    Excellent leadership.

  6. BUBS says:

    Riri is more of a role model than most. She always steps up, puts her money where her mouth is, and stands up for what she believes in. Whether it’s for Barbados (her country), Kaepernick (her friend) or the world at large…babe is a gem. And what I love about her is that she’s so relatable. We’ve seen her make poor decisions while she was younger, but she’s matured before our eyes. And she never claims to be perfect…she’ll party like it’s 99 but works damn hard and gives. Thank you Riri.

    • Hey says:

      I agree, and also love the idea of her makeup line.

    • Chelle says:

      Ditto. I love her too. Relatable. Empathetic. Reflective. Yet lives her life unapologetically. When I first saw this, I said to myself “there she goes again showing others how to lead with both kindness and concern”.

    • BearcatLawyer says:

      THIS. She is a star in so many ways.

    • lucy2 says:

      She really has grown into an amazing woman and businesswoman.
      This donation is awesome and will help many.

  7. Charfromdarock says:

    Love, love, love Rihanna for stepping up ( as usual).

    Everyone has to do their part right now, citizens, wealthy, governments, corporations.

    I have no shade for her or any other celebrity right now sharing what they are doing. Hopefully, it encourages others to step up.

    I’m nowhere near wealthy but I’m able to work from home and have a steady income. For those of us who can, it’s time to step up even more than usual.


    I’m thrilled she’s donating but agree she shouldn’t have to. Rihanna isn’t a corporate crook or some evil part of the 1%. I personally think entertainers are way overpaid, but she did earn her money. I think it’s awesome she’s doing good with it, but I wouldn’t automatically fault her for not.

  9. Wannabesith says:

    Classy Lady and a Classy Human. I love seeing stories like this. I am currently on day 1 of my mandatory quarantine. My son and I were exposed at work (We both work at a Farm store). We tested negative, but still have to go through the protocol. He and I are making the best of it. We ordered a bunch of necessities and a whole lot of junk food and we plan to get caught up on one of games he and I play together, Borderlands 3 (aptly enough for this time). Please, even if you feel well call your doctor if you think you have been exposed. Also, take this time to thank Retail Employees as well, they still have to work.

  10. Guest with Cat says:

    She’s absolutely beautiful inside and out. My daughter also loves her cosmetics line. That’s besides the point, but what the heck.

  11. Jessica says:

    My queen.

  12. Storminateacup says:

    She’s very generous. I’m more inclined to think it’s genuine because of her background. She’s grown up in the Caribbean there are few opportunities and people go through serious financial strive (no unemployment assistance). In Trinidad (West Indies) there’s a little settlement Of people that live out of boxes used to transport cars called Datsunvile. They have no running water or electric. Once you grow up seeing that it leaves a deep lasting impression on you. You are very aware of what deprivation looks like and if you have any empathy you do what you can to change it.

  13. JRenee says:

    Absolutely just wow. Great move!