NEW YORK — Colin Kaepernick, the exiled NFL quarterback still without a team, continued one of his stated missions on Thursday that started with his famed protest.
On Thursday, Kaepernick’s foundation donated another $100,000 of his pledged $1 million to give to communities of color and organizations helping the oppressed. Kaepernick has now given $900,000 of the goal. His latest offering went to DREAM, Coalition For The Homeless, War on Children, and United We Dream.
Kaepernick increased his total giving to $800,000 in August with two organizations he was already linked to and a third organization, the Lower East Side Girls Club, which provides support and opportunities to young women in New York.
To rapper J. Cole’s non-profit Dreamville, which is based in Cole’s North Carolina hometown of Fayetteville, Kaepernick sent $34,000. The money funds “a couple of new projects” Kaepernick will support, according to a release. Kaepernick and Cole plan to announce the projects in the coming weeks.
Cole met with Kaepernick this summer when the two were pictured together with Cole wearing an “I know my rights” shirt from Kaepernick’s “Know Your Rights” camp. Following their meet, Cole took a moment to praise Kaepernick during a concert stop in Baltimore.
At that time, Kaepernick was being linked to the Baltimore Ravens. The team’s owner, Steve Biscotti, said at a fan forum that he didn’t like parts of Kaepernick’s protest and the signing would upset people. He later told people to “pray for us” as they decided. (The team eventually declined to make an offer to sign Kaepernick.) Former Ravens player Ray Lewis said that Kaepernick should choose between football and activism. Cole had heard enough.
"Baltimore, the type of shit that's happening here, don't you think somebody should risk they're whole livelihood and their whole life to talk about this shit? Even if it cost them they money, they job, they life? Don't that sound like Colin Kaepernick? Don't that sound like what he doing? And he trying to come to Baltimore, the city that seems to need that shit for real," Cole the crowd at his concert, per Billboard.
Another group that received money was the 100 Suits for 100 Men coalition that Kaepernick paired with earlier in the year and who backed a rally in front of NFL Headquarters in New York to support him.
The group is receiving a year’s worth of gas money for trips to Rikers Island, where their leader, Kevin Livingston, chats with inmates and future parolees for his program. Livingston’s collective, which gives suits to recent parolees, is receiving thousands for dry cleaning, tailoring, of his suits, money for the purchase of new ones, funds for women’s programs and trips to women’s prisons.
“Simply man: we are over excited about the donation and the seed into our mission. We are going to take this money and expand our program in paroling,” Livingston told SB Nation. “This will allow us to continue the work we are doing and we will continue to stand on the front lines and support Colin and his right to go back to work.”
The last chunk of money went to the Lower East Side Girls Club in New York. The club, which connects girls and young women to entrepreneurship opportunities, healthy meals, STEM classes and workshops, received thousands to take the club’s supporters to several women’s conventions nationwide. Kaepernick also provided money for field trips, general transportation money and other supplies.
Representatives from the Lower East Side Girls Club said the group met Kapernick last year at one of his Know Your Rights camps and have stayed in touch, leading to their donation.
“We are so grateful and so excited to receive a donation from Colin,” Erica Jay, a woman with the club told SB Nation. “It just supports all the work that we do and our hopes to empower young people. He’s making that come true.”
For Livingston, though, a man who has known and advocated for Kaepernick for most of this year, he’s excited to see the quarterback’s consistent giving to grassroots organizations.
“He’s keeping his promises to folks of color. To the people mocking Colin, my five words are: What have you done lately?” Livingston said. “What are you doing for the cause? If you aren’t doing something, what gives you the right to question that man?”