I think Drake might be a little underrated as a human being, you guys. I’m not talking about his music, because you can like or dislike that as much as you want — I’m talking about him as a person. He has this persona from his music of a dude who doesn’t care about anything except items he can purchase or put his peen into or on top of, but I think that might be mostly a smoke screen. Especially after reading about what he did for the homeless in Portland, Oregon, I’m not ready to write him off so easily.
Drake was in Portland for a concert on Tuesday, and afterward traveled to an area of town known as ‘Old Town’, which has a particularly high percentage of homeless people. It’s been particularly cold in Oregon this past week or so — my family still lives there, so this is inside scoop, guys, no Weather Channel bullshit here — and a lot of people were sleeping outside in the freezing weather. Drake saw that, and in response, he made a ‘substantial cash donation’ to the Union Gospel Mission, asking that the money be set aside to buy more blankets to help people survive the cold.
And you know how we know that? Not from Drake braggily tweeting it out himself or having someone post an Instagram of the cash hand-off taking place, ala Justin Bieber. We found out because a man named Dave Willis, of the mission, told us about it:
“It lets me know that even famous people got to have hearts for those who are less fortunate. It brings them back to reality – ‘Hey I could be here. I could have been here.’”
Not only does this gesture show compassion on Drake’s part, but it also shows intelligence and humility. He could’ve gone out himself for a photo op and handed out blankets directly, but instead he gave the money to a facility with expertise in how to distribute it.
He did his job (or part of it, at least — there’s also all that music stuff that I mentioned before), which is to use his wealth for good and set a great example for his young fans, and let the Mission do theirs. Can’t get much better than that.
If you or someone you know is without shelter in Portland right now, you can call 211 to find a facility near you with available space.