Mere days after a vague sit-down with Illinois governor Bruce Rauner, Chance the Rapper pledged $1 million to Chicago Public Schools. “I’m not a politician, I’m here because I’m a dad,” the Grammy Award-winning artist said of his efforts to push for a funding increase in his native city. “I’m an after-school teacher, I care about the kids.”
Lil Chano’s commitment to education hasn’t gone unnoticed. On Wednesday (March 15), three CPS 10th graders publicly thanked the Coloring Book emcee for his good deed via an open letter on Billboard.
“First and foremost, we as Chicago Public School students would like to thank you for the supportive donation to our schools. As we all know, CPS has been struggling financially, and your donation has really given us a push to get to where we need to be and possibly motivate others to give back to the community as well. This is only one of the many things that you have done to improve our Chicago,” Alex Rojas, Alondra Cerros and Annelisse Betancourt began.
The Lake View High School students went on to applaud Chance for his humility as a celebrity, who hasn’t turned a blind eye to his community in the midst of his success. “We just want to thank you for not forgetting where you came from and helping the city of Chicago in more ways than just being an inspirational rapper. You’re using your fame for good and not just to look good. You gave $1 million dollars of your personal money to Chicago schools and that’s something no one has done for us,” they later wrote.
“We thank you for supporting Chicago’s minority youth when not many others have put time to think about the kids. As minority students we feel ignored and as though we don’t have enough support from bigger influences like you. Being born and raised in Chicago is not easy at all. There are so many stereotypes and restrictions we have as teenagers due to the frequent violence and crimes. Your music puts some at ease because we know that someone cares and someone has experienced these daily struggles too. You and your music have taught us that you can be true to yourself and still be successful, still be self-made.”
Chance not only reciprocated the appreciation, but he also promised there’s more to look forward to. “Huge things to come over the next 2weeks,” he tweeted.
I appreciate you guys, and you’ll be happy to know the work has only just started. Huge things to come over the next 2weeks. https://t.co/tplZMMW9DS
— Lil Chano From 79th (@chancetherapper) March 15, 2017
Read the full letter here.