As Hurricane Harvey continues to devastate southeast Texas in its aftermath, a number of celebrities are stepping up to provide support for the families affected by the storm’s extensive flooding and damage. Along with sending messages via social media, music stars are pooling together hundreds of thousands of dollars for the cause.
Many have taken action through Kevin Hart’s Hurricane Harvey Relief Challenge, which the comedian advertised on Instagram Sunday. (Aug. 27). Hart initially donated $25,000 before upping his contribution to $50,000 and called out fellow comedians and artists to do the same. As of press time, Hart’s fund has collected almost $800,000, with all money going to the Red Cross to help those impacted by the disaster.
“My heart goes out to my hometown, Houston, and I remain in constant prayer for those affected and for the rescuers who have been so brave and determined to do so much to help,” the singer wrote. “I am working closely with my team at BeyGOOD as well as my pastor (Rudy Rasmus at St. John’s in downtown Houston) to implement a plan to help as many as we can.”
Beyonce’s pastor, Rasmus, later told TMZ it was unlikely we would ever learn the full extent of the pop star’s donations and generosity to the people of Houston. “Beyonce is extremely private and has done a lot that she has requested that we don’t announce and publicize over the years … she has always taken a position to help this city in its times of need and now is no different — she has really stepped up and it has been a real blessing for us,” he said.
Drake stepped up for the cause, too, announcing a collaborative relief effort with Future the Prince. In a lengthy Instagram post offering his support, the rapper wrote, “Myself and @futuretheprince are working with local relief groups to aid and assist the people of Texas in anyway we can and in the most immediate way possible.”
Jennifer Lopez and boyfriend Alex Rodriguez also teamed up to help those affected, announcing that they will donate $25,000 each to the American Red Cross.
The Kardashians and Jenners, Nicki Minaj, and DJ Khaled have also made donations. In a series of tweets, Kim and Khloe Kardashian and Kris Jenner announced that they will donate a collective $500,000 to the American Red Cross and the U.S. Salvation Army.
Minaj shared Hart’s Instagram video on her own account, where she pledged $25,000, while Khaled tweeted a video of himself and his baby while taking on Hart’s challenge.
Country singer Chris Young, who owns a house in an area hit by strong winds and flooding, has offered $100,000 to relief efforts, Lady Antebellum, meanwhile, is sending all merch proceeds from Sunday night’s (Aug. 27) show in Dallas to victims of the storm.
The Chainsmokers shared a video saying although they were not personally called out by the comedian, they were were moved by his plea for help and announced they were donating $30,000 to his fund.
Jack Antonoff of Bleachers is offering specific support to a disaster relief fund started by Houston’s Montrose Center, a safe space for the LGBTQ community. He has pledged to match donations up to $10,000.
Artists have shown their support in other ways, too. Coldplay paid tribute to their Texas fans during a concert in Miami with a special performance of a new song titled “Houston.”
Rapper Lil B announced on Twitter that he’ll give Houston artists the unique opportunity for free guest verses in September.
Kacey Musgraves volunteered by answering phones during a Red Cross donation telethon Tuesday. She later posted a video to Twitter, saying that she’s looking into playing a benefit concert to raise funds for the people affected.
The Red Cross has provided a list of flood safety tips, and those who wish to help can visit redcross.org, call 1-800-RED-CROSS or text he word HARVEY to 90999 to make a $10 donation. Other organizations supporting those affected include AmeriCares, Catholic Charities, the Salvation Army and AABB.