Stormzy has just announced a pledge to donate £10 million, over ten years, to organisations, charities and movements that are committed to justice reform, black empowerment and fighting racial inequality within the UK. If the available figures are accurate, that's half his net worth, which currently stands at around £20 million.
Big legend that he is, Stormzy has been a consistent champion of black empowerment and social activism. In 2018 he launched The Stormzy Scholarship to support Black British students through the University of Cambridge, covering tuition fees and providing a maintenance grant for up to four years. Also launched in 2018, his publishing imprint #Merky Books provides a platform for young writers across new fiction, non-fiction and poetry. Titles so far have included Taking Up Space: The Black Girl’s Manifesto for Change by Chelsea Kwakye and Ore Ogunbiyi, and That Reminds Me, a novel in verse by Derek Owusu.
A press release sent around this afternoon said: "Stormzy and #Merky will forever remain devoted to improving and safeguarding the lives of those within the black community and this is just the beginning of our lifetime commitment to financially and wholeheartedly back these causes".
You can read Stormzy's full statement below.
“The uncomfortable truth that our country continuously fails to recognise and admit, is that black people in the UK have been at a constant disadvantage in every aspect of life - simply due to the colour of our skin. I’m lucky enough to be in the position I’m in and I’ve heard people often dismiss the idea of racism existing in Britain by saying “if the country’s so racist how have you become a success?!” and I reject that with this: I am not the UK’s shining example of what supposedly happens when a black person works hard. There are millions of us. We are not far and few. We have to fight against the odds of a racist system stacked against us and designed for us to fail from before we are even born. Black people have been playing on an uneven field for far too long and this pledge is a continuation in the fight to finally try and even it.”
More details will be released soon. In the meantime, Stormzy and #Merky have also urged others to join them in pledging.