Angelina Jolie. World premiere of Disney’s ‘Maleficent: Mistress Of Evil’ held at the El Capitan Theatre – Arrivals. Los Angeles, California, United States. 30 Sep 2019. Faye Sadou/Cover Images
Angelina Jolie has donated $200,000 to the NAACP for her birthday.
The actress turned 45 on June 4th and made a significant donation to the civil rights organization to show her support for the Black Lives Matter movement and those protesting the death of George Floyd.
Angelina told Entertainment Tonight in a statement: “Rights don’t belong to any one group to give to another. Discrimination and impunity cannot be tolerated, explained away, or justified. I hope we can come together as Americans to address the deep structural wrongs in our society. I stand with the NAACP Legal Defence Fund in their fight for racial equality, social justice, and their call for urgent legislative reform.”
Ryan Reynolds and Blake Lively also recently donated $200,000 to the NAACP Legal Defence Fund, which fights for racial justice.
They shared a joint statement on Instagram, which read: “We’ve never had to worry about preparing our kids for different rules of law or what might happen if we’re pulled over in the car. We don’t know what it’s like to experience that life day in and day out. We can’t imagine feeling that kind of fear and anger.
“We’re ashamed that in the past, we’ve allowed ourselves to be uninformed about how deeply rooted systemic racism is. We’ve been teaching our children differently than the way our parents taught us. We are committed to raising our kids so they never grow up feeding this insane pattern and so they’ll do their best to never inflict pain on another being consciously or unconsciously.
“It’s the least we can do to honor not just George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor and Eric Garner, but all the black men and women who have been killed when a camera wasn’t rolling. (sic)”
Angelina Jolie has also recently written to U.S. congressional leaders, calling on them to increase assistance to families hit by the Covid-19 pandemic.
The spread of the virus and resulting lockdown measures have put tens of millions of people out of work and closed schools, where many kids receive free meals, prompting Congress to approve a $15 billion increase to food assistance benefits.
However, the actress, who has worked on initiatives aimed at stopping hunger across the globe as a leading advocate for refugees and human rights, has now written to America’s top politicians and claimed that more action is needed.
“Many of the most vulnerable children in America have missed nearly 740 million meals at school, due to closure resulting from the rapid spread of coronavirus,” she penned in the letter, obtained by USA Today. “With parents facing lost jobs and wages, many of these children are going hungry.”
The star went on to demand congressional chiefs, including House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, strengthen America’s Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) in order to get food to the poorest.
About half of all U.S. public schoolchildren normally rely on free or reduced-price meals – but the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic have reduced services despite efforts to continue assistance via schools and non-profit organizations.
Before sending her letter, Angelina discussed food assistance in a video conference call with food bank organizers and leaders of the No Kid Hungry campaign aimed at alleviating food poverty among children in the U.S.
“I knew that there were problems in America, I knew that there was poverty,” the 44-year-old told the group, according to USA Today. “When I realized how many school children in America were dependent on a meal to not go hungry, I was so disgusted that we have gotten to this point as a country.”
Find out more about the NAACP here.