During the 2017 BET Awards, Grammy winner Chance The Rapper was honored with the network’s Humanitarian Award. All eyes have been on Chance since he started his SocialWorks youth empowerment organization and launched his New Chance arts and literature fund for youth in Chicago, and it’s clear from this award that the foundation has made a huge difference.
Besides the good work that New Chance does (including raising millions of dollars for the Chicago public school system), the rapper’s words during his acceptance speech have given many fans mega inspiration to do better and be better.
Before he took the stage, former First Lady Michelle Obama surprised the audience with a video message to honor the humanitarian. “We are so incredibly proud of you Chance,” Obama said, before Chance was called up to receive his award.
“I was gonna say it feels a little early to get something like this,” he said in reference to being only 24 years old. “But my god doesn’t make mistakes. And I like to think he’s putting this enormous pressure on me to see how I act. And I had plans to tell the world and everyone watching to make the world a better place.… But my big homie Reese told me that we gotta work on ourselves before we change the world.”
Chance went on to talk about police brutality, the education system, and mass incarceration before saying that his goal is to work with people at home and all over the world to make a better, more equal place. He also thanked his mom (who was his date) and his fans for their support.
Chance The Rapper ended his speech by saying he was a “good” man, but also wanted to be “a better man,” meaning that no matter where you are on your personal journey, we should always strive to be better.
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(Photos via Fredrick M. Brown/Getty)