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4 Artist-Led Charities to Know About!

Posted on September 03, 2020

If there’s one thing we love, it’s when people use their platform for a good cause. When we shared our allyship post we were so inspired by the acts of generosity and leadership displayed by so many of our artists. Since then, we’ve been taking an even closer look at some of the amazing foundations and organizations created by your favourite musicians. Keep reading to see how purpose and passion collide, and to find out how you can support your faves in the pursuit of social justice.


Founded in 2012, the Clara Lionel Foundation provides monetary support and resources to education programs and emergency relief initiatives around the world. The non-profit organization (named after Rihanna’s grandparents) advocates for basic health and education rights and has recently donated $5 million to COVID-19 response funds. Through scholarships, grants, and partnerships, Rihanna has helped students across the globe access quality education.

Her annual Diamond Ball features guest performances from friends and colleagues, auctions of exclusive items and experiences, and ultimately raises millions of dollars for the foundation.

  • Learn more about the foundation here
  • Follow the Clara Lionel Foundation here
  • Keep up with Rihanna and all of her projects here


Recently celebrating its first anniversary, The Shawn Mendes Foundation is a charitable collective that focuses on educating and empowering youth to support causes they believe in. Whether it’s mental health, climate change, discrimination, or child health, the foundation aims to connect budding change makers with the issues they’re most passionate about.

The Shawn Mendes Foundation advocates for causes close to Shawn’s heart and also allocates funds based on fan feedback. You can check out their page and have your say on where they put their attention to next.

  • Learn more about the foundation here
  • Follow The Shawn Mendes Foundation here
  • Keep up with Shawn and all of his projects here


The Born This Way Foundation (BTWF) is a charitable organization that was co-founded by Lady Gaga and her mother Cynthia Germanotta in 2012. The group builds youth-focused programs and campaigns to support mental and emotional health while fostering safe communities. As a former victim of bullying, Lady Gaga has been committed to creating a kinder and braver society for the last eight years and has been able to do so with the BTWF.

The foundation also partakes in integral research surrounding youth wellness and empowerment in hopes of improving emotional health.

  • Learn more about the foundation here
  • Follow The Born This Way Foundation here
  • Keep up with Lady Gaga and all of her projects here


Operating out of Detroit Michigan, The Sean Anderson Foundation seeks to provide young people with a better quality of life. The organization supports the health, safety and well-being of students from primary school to post-secondary. Since 2012 Big Sean has used this charity to help support homeless and impoverished youth across America by equipping them with the resources they need.

Their signature “Mogul Prep” program helps students develop their entrepreneurial skills to set them up for academic and financial success.

  • Learn more about the foundation here
  • Follow The Sean Anderson Foundation here
  • Keep up with Big Sean and all of his projects here

We’re so proud of these artist-founded charities and encourage you to look into them! Let us know what other admirable actions your favourite musicians have taken over on Instagram @UMUSIC!