Jay-Z and the NFL Unveil Fundraising Plans to Benefit Social Justice Initiatives

Jay-Z and the NFL Unveil Fundraising Plans to Benefit Social Justice Initiatives

There's an exclusive clothing line and music series on the way.

There's an exclusive clothing line and music series on the way.

Text: Dylan Kelly

Jay-Z’s full-service entertainment label Roc Nation is partnering with the NFL’s Inspire Change non-profit to fundraise for organizations dedicated to issues regarding educational empowerment, police relations, and criminal justice reform. The “Empire State of Mind” rapper will roll out two completely developed creative programs with the NFL that will benefit each of these pressing causes, in an exciting, artistic manner.

The first announced program, Inspire Change apparel, is a full-fledged collaborative clothing line set to be debuted later this year that will presumably appeal to Jay-Z’s groupie as well as NFL game-day fanatics. The second program is titled Songs of the Season, and its foretold agenda entails highlighting reputable musician’s new releases with segmented time slots during NFL television programming, drawing in an even larger audience and racking up massive dollar amounts, all of which will support the Inspire Change initiatives. Meek Mill, Meghan Trainor, and Rapsody are the first three artists to be announced for Songs of the Season, and they will all be performing at the NFL Kick-Off Experience in Chicago’s Grant Park on September 5.

Earlier this year, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell established a professional relationship with Jay-Z, inducting him into the league with the title of Live Music Entertainment Strategist. In cooperation with the rapper’s entertainment label Roc Nation, NFL will enlist Jay-Z’s talent in planning Super Bowl half-time festivities as well as accomplishing the fundraising goals of their non-profit.

Controversy surrounded Jay-Z’s decision to work with the politically stern football league due to his avid support of Colin Kaepernick’s protesting efforts; however, during the official press conference for the collaboration, the Roc Nation executive disclosed that he had spoken with Kaepernick about the partnership. “We forget that Colin’s whole thing was to bring attention to social injustice,” he explained. “In that case, this is a success. This is the next thing because there are two parts to the protest—you go out and protest, and the company and individual says, ‘I hear you. What do we do next?’”

In response to the press, Kaepernick took to social media to confirm his stance, stating, “I continue to work and stand with the people in our fight for liberation, despite those who are trying to erase the movement! The movement has always lived with the people!”

With the legendary quarterback’s approval, Jay-Z is set to garner major awareness and financial support for the Inspire Change non-profit, furthering Kaepernick’s commitment to shedding light on each of these social injustices. Rap nobility and pop culture meet top-class athletes and sports mania in this powerful partnership, and there’s no doubt its impact will be just as compelling.

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