Article by Marissa Kelly | esPResso Staff Writer
On Monday, March 6, Grammy-winning artist Chance the Rapper announced in a press conference that he would be donating $1 million to Chicago Public Schools. The musician claimed that his donation is a “call to action,” signaling out Chicago Governor Bruce Rauner.
Last week, the best new artist winner took to Twitter to reveal that he would be meeting privately with Gov. Rauner to discuss funding education in Chicago. Coming from the windy city himself, the rapper hasn’t been shy in the past about his passion for education, particularly within the public school system. Rauner vetoing a $215 million funding bill for Chicago Public Schools in December prompted the unlikely conversation and meeting between him and Chance the Rapper.
The musician used his Twitter account to make multiple announcements regarding the meeting and donation. Also, by using Periscope, a livestream of his full press conference was featured on his feed for all followers to see. Chance has a strong following on the social platform and using it strategically by announcing all updates pertaining to the events of the past week have certainly worked in his favor. The rapper has also posted a direct link that can allow his followers to directly donate to Chicago Public Schools. He is currently using #SupportCPS to allow the cause to gain awareness.
Even more recently, former first lady Michelle Obama has reached out to Chance on Twitter. She thanked the 23-year-old artist for giving back to the Chicago community, calling him “an example of the power of arts education.”
At the conference, Chance claimed that his actions weren’t “about politics” or “posturing.” Instead, for the musician, “this is about taking care of the kids.” Chancelor Jonathan Bennett, Chance’s real name, has gathered much of his donation through proceeds from selling tickets for his upcoming tour. The full donation will be divided amongst 10 public elementary schools and high schools within Chicago. Through Twitter, Bennett is now urging others to contribute to fundraising through SocialWorks, a youth empowerment organization that he helped established. The organization guarantees that for every $100,000 raised, they will add an additional $10,000 to go to a specific public school in Chicago.
Chance continuously shows his support for Chicago Public Schools on twitter. His use of the social network has the potential of allowing the cause that he strongly believes in to succeed.