Rihanna contributed $15 million to climate justice organizations through the Clara Lionel Foundation (CLF), an NGO formed by the singer, fashion designer, and businesswoman, only days before breaking the news of her pregnancy. CLF announced this week that, in partnership with #StartSmall, a philanthropy effort founded by Twitter founder Jack Dorsey, they will give $15 million to 18 organizations working on climate justice in the United States and the Caribbean.
The funds will go to organizations that are “centered on and led by women, youth, Black, Indigenous, people of color, and LGBTQIA+ communities,” with a focus on climate adaption and community resilience. As many have already stated, the climate crisis is expected to have the greatest impact on these underprivileged communities.
“Much of the work at the Clara Lionel Foundation is based on the realization that climatic disasters, which are becoming more frequent and intense, do not affect all communities equally, with communities of color and island nations bearing the brunt of climate change. This is why CLF prioritizes climate resilience and climate justice work in the United States and the Caribbean,” said Robyn “Rihanna” Rihanna “Fenty, the CLF’s founder.
The Climate Justice Alliance, Indigenous Environmental Network, Caribbean Climate Justice Project, Climate and Clean Energy Equity Fund, Black Visions Collective, and the Black Feminist Fund are among the organizations that will benefit from the pledge. A lot of these commitments were made in collaboration with Dorsey’s #StartSmall campaign, which has donated about $450 million to a variety of causes, including climate justice and COVID-19 relief, as well as organizations that promote girls’ education and health. On Dorsey’s live public spreadsheet tracking his gifts, a complete list of the #StartSmall initiatives may be found.
Rihanna founded CLF in 2012 as a humanitarian organization to fund education and climate resiliency efforts in Africa, the Caribbean, and North America, named after her grandparents Clara and Lionel Braithwaite. Rihanna was born on Barbados, a Caribbean island that is particularly sensitive to the effects of climate change, such as coastal erosion, sea-level rise, increased tidal and storm surge levels, rising temperatures, and changes in rainfall, among other things. Her efforts have already aided Caribbean communities suffering from the effects of the climate crisis.
When Hurricane Dorian wreaked havoc in the Bahamas in 2019, the CLF raised funds for help by selling limited edition designs from Rihanna’s lingerie line Savage X Fenty. With the climate catastrophe intensifying, CLF appears to be speeding up its efforts to assist some of the world’s most vulnerable communities.