While You Were Arguing About The Anthem, Colin Kaepernick Just Finished Donating $1 Million

(CNN) — People like to talk about Colin Kaepernick. But while everyone was busy arguing over the on-field protests he spearheaded two years ago, the free agent NFL quarterback was putting his money where his mouth is.

On Wednesday, Kaepernick completed a pledge he made in September 2016: To donate $1 million to organizations working in, what he called, oppressed communities.

The donations spanned the country and touched on a wealth of social issues: Homelessness, at-risk families, education, community-police relations, prison reform, inmates’ right, reproductive rights, hunger and more.

For instance, a recent donation in partnership with rapper T.I. went to building materials and labor for an organization in Houston that’s helping neighborhoods affected by Hurricane Harvey.

As a finale to his year of giving, Kaepernick teamed up with influential athletes and artists to spotlight organizations close to them. He called the project #10for10, and asked participants to donate $10,000 to a cause of their choice, which he then matched with another $10,000.

His final $10,000 went to match a donation from Usher.

“This is a collaborative effort, and as a result of us helping each other we all become stronger,” Usher said in a joint video message posted by Kaepernick.

Here are the 10 celebrities that joined Kaepernick in his final $100,000 in donations, as well as a few of the organizations he donated to previously, as recorded on his foundation’s website. The announcement of each of Kaepernick’s individual donations also included a breakdown of what the money went to and why.


10. Usher: $20k to H.O.M.E. in Lithonia, Georgia

9. Meek Mill: $20k to Youth Service, Inc. in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

8. Nick Cannon and Joey Badass: $40,000 to Communities United by Police Reform in New York, New York

7. Jhene Aiko and Chris Brown: School on Wheels in Los Angeles, California

6. T.I.: $20k to Angel by Nature in Houston, Texas

5. Serena Williams: $20k to Imagine LA in Los Angeles, California

4. Snoop Dogg: $20k to Mothers Against Police Brutality in Dallas, TX

3. Steph Curry: $20k to United Playaz in San Francisco, California

2. Jesse Williams: $20k to Advancement Project in Washington, DC

1. Kevin Durant: $20k to Silicon Valley De-Bug in San José, California

Some other donation highlights:

$25,000 to DREAM, a baseball organization in Harlem, New York

$25,000 to Coalition for the Homeless in New York, New York

$25,000 to United We Dream, a organization helping immigrant youth

$33,000 to Lower East Side Girls Club in New York, New York

$33,000 to 100 Suits for 100 Men in Jamaica, New York

$25,000 to American Friends Service Committee, which provides behavioral health treatment and other services to incarcerated individuals, in Phoenix, Arizona

$50,000 to Life After Hate, an educational and rehabilitative organization started by former members of hate groups, in Chicago, IL

$50,000 to Somalia Famine Relief

$25,000 to Black Veterans for Social Justice in Brooklyn, New York

$25,000 to Center for Reproductive Rights in New York, New York

$25,000 to Mothers Against Police Brutality in Dallas, Texas

$25,000 to I Will Not Die Young Campaign in Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Kaepernick became the subject of rage and respect when he knelt during the national anthem before several 2016 NFL preseason and regular season games. In March 2017 he became a free agent and has not played in the NFL since. However, his actions and the actions of the few players who joined him lit a spark that became an inferno early in the 2017 season, with #TakeAKnee taking over the coverage of several NFL games. In October, Kaepernick filed a grievance against the NFL, accusing the league of collusion.

In November, he was named GQ’s Citizen of the Year, and in December, he accepted the 2017 Sports Illustrated Muhammad Ali Legacy Award.

“With or without the NFL’s platform, I will continue to work for the people,” he said during his acceptance speech. “Because my platform is the people.”

He has a chance to add to his awards Thursday afternoon, when the NFL Players’ Association hands out its Community MVP honor. Though Kaepernick didn’t play for a team this past season, he was eligible because he is a member of the players’ union.

The winner will receive a $100,000 donation to a charity he selects.

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