SEATTLE, Washington — Aliaume Damala Badara Akon Thiam, more commonly known as Akon, is a famous rapper that is not only talented but charitable as well. He is of Senegalese descent and had been picked on growing up because of his race and “African-inspired clothing.” With a family in love with music, his rise to fame was all but inevitable. He wanted to use the fame he acquired for more than just himself. Most recognize him as the Akon who brought electricity to parts of Africa, but Akon’s donations involve a variety of charities in Africa and the United States.
Peace One Day
The first charity that Akon participated in was Peace One Day in 2014. With conflict going on in Goma in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Jeremy Gilley was among the people in the country in 2001. He saw the conflict first hand and decided that one day of peace was in order. He petitioned governments to establish one day of peace in the region, and the U.N. General Assembly passed it.
In 2014, the Day of Peace in Goma took place with a concert headlining Akon with special guest Jude Law. The day before the event, Law addressed local and foreign journalists and asked them to spread and report nothing but positivity on this day.
The concert was held at the Goma airport, which the government shut down for the event. They performed the concert hoping to promote nonviolence and global ceasefire. To be able to make peace for one day in a violent area like Goma opened up the same possibility in other areas of the world. Hopefully, these countries could witness and also be encouraged to end the violence. The concert raised revenue from the video that was made, which was then given back the community.
The Konfidence Foundation
In 2007, The Konfidence Foundation was founded by Akon and his mother and is dedicated to empowering youth in his home Senegal and the United States. The goal is to unite these nations to build the Africa of tomorrow and empower the people of these nations with the tools needed to do so. His celebrity status and growing passion for philanthropy drew his fans in and inspired them to support his foundation. With this, he can provide them with modern technology to equip them for that future.
He is not just using donations to make this happen, he’s taking more of an entrepreneur approach to it. He created a song titled “Oh Africa” with Keri Hilson and part of the proceeds from the song and his tour go to the Konfidence Foundation. Then after his tour, he took that money to build an education system in Senegal. Akon’s donations promote health and education for the youth in Africa, so they can be empowered and help build a better nation in the future.
Continuing to Donate to Important Causes
Akon’s donations come back to music once again, which makes sense since he is a famous rapper. In 2007, Akon joined Peter Buffett to remake Buffett’s song “Anything,” to raise awareness and money for Africa. Buffett created the NoVo Foundation with his money. They can also purchase the song off of that website and all proceeds go to the NoVo Foundation. The foundation focuses on rebuilding communities in Liberia and Sierra Leone, fighting for equality for women and young girls and supporting American Indian causes.
Right now, Akon is involved in businesses in Africa, mostly with the Akon Lighting Africa charity. He had gone back home to help the people across the continent develop and improve. His goal is to inspire the younger generation in Africa to take a business approach towards the issues they are currently facing. He has taken a break from his music to focus on his endevours.