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ATLANTA - More than 2,500 people lined up in the Georgia heat last week to share in the generosity of 21 Savage.
The Atlanta rapper hosted his third annual “Issa Back 2 School Drive” on Aug. 5 to benefit students from DeKalb County Schools. The event, which last year attracted about 700 people, outfitted students in grades K-12 with backpacks, shoes, uniforms and school supplies.
Kids and their families snaked along the sidewalk of the 285 Flea Mart off Glenwood Road in a shopping center the lanky “Whole Lot” rapper, 25, said he used to hang around as a teen. Many of the beneficiaries also received free haircuts and food from tents stationed in the parking lot.
It was a scene that made 21 Savage quietly proud.
“I might rap about a lot of stuff, but that’s just a reflection of what I’ve been through,” he said while seated in his manager’s truck a few feet away from the throng of fans. “In real life, everything I do, I want to bring everybody together. I want to give back to the community, help the kids, get them uniforms, books, book bags, everything they need ... just do better. That’s where it starts, the kids.”
U.S. Rep. Henry "Hank" Johnson, D-Georgia, and his wife, DeKalb County Commissioner Mereda Davis Johnson, also attended to check out the scene.
The event and supplies were funded by 21 Savage and his Leading By Example Foundation. Other sponsors included City National Bank, Spotify, Epic Records and 10:22 p.m. Records.
During a recent appearance on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show,” 21 Savage launched a “Bank Account” campaign to help young adults learn financial responsibility and donated $1,000 to 21 kids in partnership with the nonprofit organization Get Schooled.