Vic Mensa has been among the most active emcees when it comes to promoting social justice. He participated in #BlackLivesMatter demonstrations, joined Standing Rock protesters, hit the stage at the #JusticeForFlint fundraising event, and showed support for Assata Shakur.
The Roc Nation artist is now leading a non-profit organization to help his hometown. SaveMoneySaveLife will include the first responders/mental-health program StreetMedics as well as the summer mentorship program UniVerse.
"All of our initiatives, to begin with, are going to be very Chicago-focused. Oftentimes, people ask me, "What is the main cause of the unrest in Chicago?" And I point to the lack of investment in the community," said Mensa. "To everything being sapped from the community. To young men being snatched up and generations of fathers being imprisoned. And drugs being pumped into the community. And guns being pumped into the community. But there’s still no positive constructive resources being put into the community."
SaveMoneySaveLife is scheduled to launch on March 16. Mensa and singer-songwriter Jamila Woods will perform at an inaugural gala at Chicago’s Lincoln Hall with all the proceeds benefiting the foundation.
"I’ve been politically minded and socially conscious for a long time. I got a tattoo of a black panther with 'Free Huey' on my shoulder when I was 16. So these things have always been on my mind. But more so recently, I’ve started to realize that this life is about service," added Vic. "It’s not just about personal gain. Service is key. And as I have more on my plate, and I have more ambitions and more goals and things I want for myself, I’m realizing more and more how important it is to be a servant."