Happy Birthday to our main man Common!
What you may not known about Common is that he's got a big heart, especially when it comes to underprivileged youth. In honor of his birthday, we wanted to share one of his biggest projects to date with you - in case you didn't realize how awesome Common is.
In hopes of branching out and assisting kids through creative arts, education, and mentoring, he created what is called the Common Ground Foundation. He shared with with WBUR the reason why he started the organization with the following sentiment:
"Well my thinking is, growing up, my friends that I grew up around, some of them didn’t have what I had. I had a mother who was very loving and an educator who made sure I did well in school and worked hard so that I could go to school. Well unfortunately, some of my friends didn’t have a father or a mother that was there for several reasons. And I always looked at that and said, 'Man, I want to help people who don’t have.' Because these are people that I saw that are good people that I cared about, and they just didn’t have some of, you know, just the natural blessings that human beings deserve."
When it comes to his mission statement for the foundation, he felt that if you "started with the youth, then we would be planting seeds for our future to blossom." With a stacked team of Coaches, Instructors, and more, they work with inner city youth of Chicago to tackle issues in their lives, mostly through creative arts. They link up with students for 3 years and are typically set with 60 students in the 13-16 age. They go to summer camp, work on ACT / SAT prep courses, and scholarship strategies to apply for college, according to their site.
They've also hosted many events including Fundraisers, Community Showcases, Concerts, and more, which sounds like an awesome time to get involved. Though some of us are not in the Chicago area, you can still get involved with donating to the cause at commongroundfoundation.org/donate-now/.
Someone needs to put Common and Chance The Rapper together. Can you imagine how much could get done for the City of Chicago if those two teamed up?!
Amy Cooper is the type of journalist that when asked "What do you bring to the table," she replies "I am the table.