Named after her grandparents Clara and Lionel Brathwaite, Rihanna’s Clara Lionel Foundation was founded in 2012 to help contribute to global health and education initiatives for families in need. In a new video, Rihanna talks about the inspiration behind the charity’s work, remembering her late grandmother and sharing a look inside her efforts thus far.
“When I think of my grandmother, I think of a very strong woman. I mean very strong, very independent. But the most caring woman,” Rihanna said. “Very giving, very selfless; all the women in my family strived to be like her. And that’s why I’m here. She has battled cancer, and she passed away. So I care about fighting this disease. I care about getting giving people a chance.”
Detailing past partnerships with UNICEF to raise $5.5 million for HIV/AIDS awareness, with DKMS to garner bone marrow donations from 3,000 people for leukemia and with Hard Rock to raise $200,000 for education and the arts, the Clara Lionel Foundation video championed the Bajan pop star as the leader of its cause. She also made a considerable contribution to her homeland. Suffering from a high cancer mortality rate, Barbados received a new radiotherapy machine to the oncology department at the Queen Elizabeth hospital from the singer.
The Clara Lionel Foundation plans to head clean water programs in countries such as Haiti, Cambodia and Ethiopia. As far as her motivation to keep giving, Rihanna’s response was quite plain.
“It’s as simple as this: one day, you could be the one in need. Your kids, your kids’ kids, your loved ones, nobody is exempt from disease and poverty. You just never know. But we will fight for you the same way.”
Learn more about the Clara Lionel Foundation here.