At ConnecMe2 we spend our time providing opportunities to people seeking to gain insight, qualifications and experiences in their desired industry.
Check out our Top 10 list of X-factor Providers who are giving back to their communities in a BIG way!
Before we get into the list we’ve got a few honourable mentions:
We’d like to shout out to Steven Bartlett, Anthony Joshua, Akshay Ruparella and the late Nipsey Hussle for the various ways they’ve helped people in their communities progress.
Now let’s get into the list:
10. Krept and Konan
The Rap duo have not just done a lot for the UK music and talent scene but also for opportunities they have created in the community. As well as launching their own restaurant Crepes and Cones and providing jobs in their home area, they also created the Play Dirty Foundation back in 2017 to help provide creative opportunities for young people due to the closure of many youth clubs over the years. Krept and Konan also created their own company ‘Play Dirty Party’ which hosts a number of different events and parties through the UK and abroad. Long story short; Krept and Konan have not just bought hot freestyles and music videos to the masses, they also bought a number of different employment opportunities to their area, as well as good food and good nights (from what we’ve heard).
9. Idris Elba
Actor (and owner of Green Door Pictures) Idris Elba is one who credits the start of his career with being fortunate enough to have the opportunity of being given help and support by organisations such as The Prince’s Trust. Idris has dedicated some of his time to giving back and in 2009 The Prince’s Trust appointed him as their anti-crime ambassador. Since taking up the role he’s worked on numerous projects including his designated kids gym membership campaign, aimed at young people to help them to focus and develop discipline in a healthy environment on and off the streets.
8. Wilfred Zaha
With a lack of opportunities for young people to find fulfilling employment, some do unfortunately turn to illegitimate ways to make money. Wilfred Zaha however, is trying to change the way young people look at employment and the routes to get there. Teaming up with The Met Police and his club’s Palace For Life Foundation they were able to create the ‘Divert Programme’ which aims to help people in these situations find more legitimate and fulfilling means of making ends meet and consequently prevent reoffending. His team even gifted him the Palace For Life Community Award.
Jason Black (better known as J2K) started off in the music industry as a Grime MC. But his talents didn’t just stop there. Jason has gone on to create a few different businesses which have helped to create numerous opportunities in industries which before were not as diverse.
He launched an academy with DJ Sian Anderson called FloorSixx which provided real-life opportunities and experience to 20 students with companies such as Red Bull and Vevo. Despite this being no longer, it’s clear he has a strong passion for seeing UK urban culture thrive and has seen much success with his company Crep Protect. Going global, J2K is cleaning up and creating real significant opportunities for his community. He even owns a stake in Crepes and Cones!
Rihanna has really put in ’work’ in a multitude of different ways, not just in regard to her music, but also through her business ventures and the ways she has given back and been able to be at the forefront of opening up platforms which people previously didn’t have access to. The singer and creator of Fenty has impacted the beauty industry in a major way, providing jobs, makeup options and products that weren’t previously available for many women of colour.
As an ambassador for Barbados and the Global Partnership for Education, Rihanna uses her star power to raise awareness of certain issues as well as supporting over 20 charities.
5. Alex Stephany
Alex Stephany created Beam which is a platform that focuses on giving homeless people a career, self-worth and true independence. The creation of Beam by the entrepreneur was born out of frustration and sadness by the number of homeless people on the streets of London. Beam is a crowdfunding platform that helps to provide career training for the homeless alongside creating career plans. Once a member has completed their training, Beam continues to work with them on things like a CV and interview preparation.
4. Dr Dre
Everyone knows Dr Dre, either from his music or his brand, ‘Beats by Dre.’ However, beats are not the only way in which Dr Dre has created opportunities for people to further their life and career path. Alongside Jimmy Iovine, he launched ‘The USC Jimmy Iovine and Andre Young Academy for Arts’ in 2013, preparing students with courses in business, marketing, product development, design and liberal arts.
Their main aim is to help educate the younger generation as Dr Dre told Times reporter Jenna Wortham, his aim is ‘to help financially disadvantaged students to go on to do something that could potentially change the world.’
That’s the energy we need!
3. Josh Babarinde
Josh Babarinde is a true example of social mobility and we’re excited to see how far he goes with this! He’s the founder of Cracked It, an award-winning social enterprise phone screen repair company that employs young people involved in knife crime. With many young people who have offended or classed as ‘at-risk,’ finding employment is an issue. The Cracked It mission is to use smartphone repair to educate and mentor young people, develop their skills and create opportunities for them to transition into future employment.
We’re supporting you Josh!
2. Dr Anne- Marie Imafidon MBE
Dr Anne-Marie Imafidon MBE, is a woman with many talents, having passed two of her GCSEs in primary school and passed A-Level computing at just 11! She has dedicated her life’s research to the study of the Sciences and has taken it upon herself to inspire a whole new generation of women into “STEM” Subjects (science, technology, engineering and maths). Dr Anne-Marie is the founder of Stemettes, a social enterprise that works to inspire and encourage young girls to take up STEM careers. Since launching in 2013, Stemettes has worked with 40,000 girls across events, workshops, mentoring programmes and experiences. Its long-term goal is to increase the proportion of women in STEM job roles from 21% to 30% and we are positive the only way is up.
Not being his first number 1, UK rapper Stormzy tops our list!
He doesn’t just do a lot for the UK music scene but also for the community at large. Stormzy’s Bursary programme in collaboration with Cambridge University helps pay for two black students from disadvantaged backgrounds per year to get a top-class education at one of the best academic institutions in the world. He also created opportunities for those who have more of a creative edge, in collaboration with publishing company Penguin, establishing ‘Merky Books’ which aims to ‘form a new generation of writers.’ We’re definitely here for this!
Compiled by Destiny Stevenson-Oridota