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21 Savage provides more than 2,500 DeKalb County school kids with free supplies

More than 2,500 people lined up in the oppressive heat Sunday afternoon to share in the generosity of 21 Savage.

The Atlanta rapper hosted his third annual “Issa Back 2 School Drive” to benefit students from DeKalb County Schools. The event, which last year attracted about 700 people, outfitted students in grades K-12 with backpacks, shoes, uniforms and school supplies.

Kids and their families snaked along the sidewalk of the 285 Flea Mart off Glenwood Road in a shopping center the lanky “Whole Lot” rapper, 25, said he used to hang around as a teen. Many of the beneficiaries also received free haircuts and food from tents stationed in the parking lot.

It was a scene that made 21 Savage quietly proud.

“I might rap about a lot of stuff, but that’s just a reflection of what I’ve been through,” he said while seated in his manager’s truck a few feet away from the throng of fans. “In real life, everything I do, I want to bring everybody together. I want to give back to the community, help the kids, get them uniforms, books, book bags, everything they need…just do better. That’s where it starts, the kids.”

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Students and their families lined up at the third annual"Issa Back 2 School Drive" in DeKalb County on Aug. 5, 2018. Photo: Moses Robinson/Getty Images for Leading By Example Foundation

Congressman Henry ‘Hank’ Johnson, U.S. Representative for Georgia’s 4th Congressional District and his wife, DeKalb County Commissioner Mereda Davis Johnson, also attended to check out the scene.

The event and supplies were funded by 21 Savage and his Leading By Example Foundation. Other sponsors included City National Bank, Spotify, Epic Records and 10:22 p.m. Records.

During a recent appearance on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show,” 21 Savage launched a “Bank Account” campaign to help young adults learn financial responsibility and donated $1,000 to 21 kids in partnership with the non-profit organization, Get Schooled.

We’ll have more about 21 Savage in an AJC feature later this month.  

About the Author

Atlanta Journal-Constitution staff writer Melissa Ruggieri covers the Atlanta Music Scene and entertainment news for print and online.

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