Beyoncé Knowles-Carter is probably the most valuable asset to the Gucci brand, thanks to her epic Instagram posts on behalf of the fashion label. Now, she’s cashing in on her influence for a very good cause. On World Water Day (March 22), the music icon announced that her latest endeavor will be to bring fresh water to women and children in Burundi—and Gucci will pick up the tab, to the tune of $1 million.
Queen Bey and Gucci partnered with Chime for Change to provide water to over 120,000 women and children in the East African nation. Her efforts will help prevent waterborne illnesses, and improve the lived experiences of young girls who will no longer have to walk long distances to retrieve fresh water. And Beyoncé isn’t even close to finished. Her BEYGOOD4BURUNDI initiative aims to reach 475,000 children and families in Burundi by the year 2020. Burundi has been facing major political upheaval lately, after President Pierre Nkurunziz declared his intention to change the constitution to abolish term limits so that he can remain “president for life.” Nkurunziz’s government has already murdered, raped, and tortured thousands of dissidents and protestors, prompting the United Nations to call it one of “the most prolific slaughterhouses of humans in recent times.” According to The Washington Post, more than 400,000 people have fled the country since 2015.
While most of what we see of Bey is snippets of her ultra-fabulous life, let’s not forget that behind-the-scenes, she is deeply committed to causes that give back to, rebuild, and uplift the most vulnerable communities in the world. Here are just a few of her recent charitable endeavors:
Trip to Haiti
In 2015, Beyoncé was accompanied by the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs to survey how the 7.0 magnitude 2010 earthquake still impacts those who call the poverty-stricken island home. She toured settlement camps and hospitals to take in the dire situation first hand and learn what still needs to be done.
Raising Money for Flint
Beyoncé was doing far more than just performing during her Formation World Tour. Leading up to her stop in Detroit, Michigan, Bey announced that she and her company Parkwood Entertainment had donated over $82,000 to United Way of Genesee County to help those struggling with the Flint water crisis. On top of that, her company also announced that 14 Michigan students had received “college gifts” to help send them to school.
The Survivor Foundation
Following the devastation of Hurricane Katrina, Beyoncé teamed up with her parents, her sister Solange, and Kelly Rowland, to offer assistance to the thousands displaced by the hurricane. She also held massive food drives during her 2006 The Beyoncé Experience Tour.
Partnership with Goodwill
In 2013, Beyoncé partnered with Goodwill to take on the unemployment crisis. The programming helped people get back into the workforce by providing education, job training, and placement. She also encouraged her devoted fanbase to donate clothes, electronics, and more to the nonprofit giant. “I wanted to team up with an organization that puts people first and works every day to help them improve and re-establish their lives,” Beyonce said in a statement.
Beyoncé’s Phoenix House
While working on the 2009 film Cadillac Records, Bey was introduced to rehabilitation center Phoenix House. She was so impacted by the organization that she decided to donate her $4 million salary from to the film to the rehab foundation. That money went toward opening an affiliated cosmetology center, which offers residents of the Phoenix House a seven-month training program to learn real-world skills. In a statement, the Phoenix House thanked Beyoncé, saying, “We express our heartfelt gratitude to Beyoncé and Miss Tina for their tremendous gift, which will indeed change lives.”
Donations to the Homeless in Houston
Beyoncé does far more for the city of Houston than just calling out her hometown in songs. In 2007, she founded the Knowles-Temenos Place Apartments to offer a living space for 43 people who had been displaced by Hurricane Katrina. As of 2016, she had donated a total of $7 million to keep the complex up to snuff. And she kept her good works in Houston going after Hurricane Harvey hit. Following the storm, she and her daughter Blue Ivy traveled to Houston to serve meals to people who had lost their homes. She took time to meet with many of the storm’s victims, and also made a significant donation to help those in need.
A Queen’s work is never done.