The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

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NFLer Kaepernick Donates to Local Charities

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Photo Courtesy/Flickr Commons (Tomm_Dogg)

Former San Francisco 49ers quarterback and current NFL free agent, Colin Kaepernick, is still putting in work. His Kaepernick’s Foundation donated $100,000 to New York Charities, including  DREAM, the Coalition for The Homeless, War on Children, and United We Dream groups on Sept. 7. In August, the foundation gave $33,000 to the Lower East Side Girls Club.

The foundation also gave $34,000 to rapper and St. John’s alum J.Cole’s non-profit group Dreamville (also the name of his record label), and another $33,000 to Queens-based 100 Suits for 100 Men.

Kaepernick pledged last year to donate $1,000,000 to charities around the nation, documential the total coast of each contribution on his website.

So far, the 29-year-old has donated about $800,000 according to USA Today. His goal last year was to donate $100,000.

The Dreamville Foundation is based in Fayetteville, North Carolina Cole’s hometown. The mission of the group is to help, support, inspire and encourage young people in urban areas.

“I want to start the process of showing them there are other options besides what’s on screen,” said J Cole of his charitable work on the Dreamville website. “They don’t have to be rapper or an athlete, there are people who manage the rappers, who book the shows. There are so many jobs you can do, this is about expanding their minds to those possibilities.”

Dreamville organizes programs such as the “Back to School Supply Giveaway”, the “Annual Dreamville Weekend”, “The Dreamville Foundation X DTLR Young Men’s Book Club”, and “The Nobody’s Perfect Writing Contest and Mother’s Day Brunch.”

During the summer, Cole showed his support for Kaepernick at a concert in Baltimore. Ravens owner Steve Biscotti and others in the organization were in talks about signing the quarterback but decided against it due to fear of backlash from the fans and potential negative press surrounding the club. . Kaepernick kneeled during the National Anthem in 2016 as part of a peaceful protest to bring awareness to social injustice toward blacks and other minorities.

The type of s–t that’s happening here, don’t you think somebody should risk their  whole livelihood land their whole life to talk about this s–t?” asked Cole. “Even if it cost them they money, they job, they life? Don’t that sound like Colin Kaepernick? Don’t that sound like what he doing? And he trying to come to Baltimore, the city that seems to need that s–t for real.”

Kaepernick and Cole will team up to create and support new projects within the Dreamville Foundation in the near future.

In May, the former 49ers quarterback gave 50 suits to 100 Suits to 100 Men, a company that assists former prisoners by “helping them get jobs and giving them free business attire, haircuts, and job training.”

The organization was founded in 2011 by Kevin Livingston, the president who is very grateful for the donation by the free agent.

“We very appreciative and the money is going to support the work that we do throughout the city,” said Livingston. “We are going to take the money and expand our program in paroling.”

The money will help with the cost of dry cleaning, getting new suits and shirts, fixing the company’s vehicle, gas for frequent trips to Rikers Island plus the women’s prison and money for women’s programs, supplies for the office and equipment (laptop, printer, etc), and salary to give to volunteers.

Kaepernick’s contributions go to different cities and organizations that are geared towards helping blacks and minorities and oppressed people.

“He’s keeping his promises to folks of color,” said Livingston. “To the people mocking Colin, my five words are: What have you done lately? “What are you doing for the cause? If you aren’t doing something, what gives you the right to question that man?”

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