Russell Simmons and LL Cool J reunited to speak with incarcerated youth at New York’s Rikers Island on Thursday (July 31). The former Def Jam duo launched the national anti-violence program, RushCard’s Keep the Peace Initiative, spearheaded by Simmons’ debit card company.
The hip-hop mogul told the audience to focus on improving their lives from the inside out. “It’s your spirit you’ve got to work on,” he said.
They also visited NYCHA developement Baisley Park Houses, where Uncle Rush (a Hollis native) donated $100,000 to LIFE Camp, a Queens-based organization that aims to reshape the community by working with young people to reduce violence.
“At the end of the day, I come from here,” said LL, who hails from St. Albans. “These are my brothers, sons, and my nephews. I want to be there for them and show them that anything is possible.”