About the Scholarship Fund
The Freedom Scholarship Fund was established in September of 2018 in memory of the late singer George Michael.
Since that time, we have raised $21,000.00 to provide financial aid for deserving students in the areas of music, art and LGBT youth. Our committee meets several times per year to review deserving organizations to be the recipients of a donation from the fund. Since George supported many charitable organizations in his lifetime, we feel no deserving cause should be eliminated from consideration.
You can view the donation history of the Fund below, including the amounts and recipients for each donation.
In 2021, the committee decided to make a $2,000.00 donation to Covenant House located in New York City. Covenant House provides food, shelter, health care, counseling and job readiness training for LGBTQ homeless youth. (Donation acknowledgement letter can be found here.)
In 2021, the committee decided to make a donation of $1,000.00 to LGBT Rain Foundation. The Rain Foundation provides housing and an array of detailed, relevant and responsive services for LGBT youth. (Donation acknowledgement letter can be found here.)
In 2021, the committee decided to make a donation of $2,000.00 to VH1’s Save The Music Foundation. Save The Music donates instruments, music technology and other equipment to jump start public school music programs. They service children from pre-k through grade 12. (Donation acknowledgement letter can be found here.)
In 2021, the committee decided to make a one time donation of $250.00 to the North Texas Food Bank. The people of Texas have been devastated by the inclement (unusual) weather that left many with no food or clean drinking water at this time. Our small donation will provide 750 meals for people in need. (Donation acknowledgement letter can be found here.)
In 2021, the committee decided to make a one time donation of $1,000.00 to Play On Philly. Play On Philly provides underserved children in Philadelphia a transformative music education experience that develops and inspires the behaviors and personal skills needed for a successful life. (Donation acknowledgement letter can be found here.)
Our most grateful thanks to Photographer Pete Still for his generous donation of concert photos. You can reach Pete to purchase additional concert photo packages through his Facebook page .
In 2020, we were able to donate $500.00 to CAP (Cascade Aids Project) located in Portland, Oregon for their Camp KC project. Camp KC offers a fun and safe summer camp experience for kids affected or infected with HIV/AIDS throughout Oregon and Southwest Washington. (Donation acknowledgement letter can be found here.)
In 2020, we were able to donate $150.00 to Project Angel Food’s Pride campaign. Project Angel Food is located in Los Angeles, California. They prepare and deliver healthy meals to feed people impacted by serious illness. George was a huge supporter of Project Angel Food in his lifetime. (Donation acknowledgement letter can be found here.)
In 2020, we were able to donate $1,500.00 to Hungry For Music an organization located in Washington, DC. Hungry For Music, for the past 25 years, has collected and refurbished musical instruments and distributes them to children in need. In the past 25 years they have distributed over 14,000 musical instruments to children around the world. (Donation acknowledgement letter can be found here.)
In 2020, the committee decided to make a one-time donation of $1500.00 to Philabundance Food Pantry in Philadelphia, PA. Due to a recent theft the organization lost almost 1 million dollars in revenue that was badly needed to feed families in crisis. Now more than ever we need organizations like Philabundance as so many people are literally starving during the Covid pandemic. (Donation acknowledgement letter can be found here.)
Our most grateful thanks to Shirley Lewis and Lincoln Jean-Marie for their contributions to The Freedom Scholarship Fund in 2020. These two amazing supporters to our cause have been so generous with their time and donations (merchandise) in helping us to raise funds for The Freedom Scholarship Fund. For those of you who are not aware Shirley Lewis and Lincoln Jean-Marie are singers who worked with George.
In 2019, we were able to donate $1,500.00 to West Side High School in Newark, New Jersey, to purchase musical instruments for their music room. West Side High School’s principal Mr. Cook was featured on the Ellen TV show, when the media found out he purchased a washer and dryer so his students could wash their clothing each week. Something so simple as clean clothes (that we all take for granted) was the cause of his students not attending school. Special thanks to everyone who donated items to our silent auction this year. (Donation acknowledgement letter can be found here.)
In 2019, we were able to donate $3,000.00 to Courage MKE, to continue their amazing work with LGBTQ youth. Courage MKE co-founders Brad and Nick Schlaikowski opened Wisconsin’s first home for displaced LGBTQ youth. These two amazing men have opened their hearts to displaced LGBTQ youth who were living on the streets with no place to call home. We applaud Brad and Nick and are honored to play a small part in their mission. (Donation acknowledgement letter can be found here.)
In 2018, we were able donate $6,500.00 to sponsor twelve (12) students at Settlement Music School in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, who received private music instruction from our fundraising efforts. (Donation acknowledgement letter can be found here.)
Our most grateful thanks to all who attended our Meet & Greet as well as the generous people who donated items for auction. They are photographers Brian Aris, Michael Putland, Neal Preston, Chris Craymer and backup singer Shirley Lewis. Other items were donated to the auction from Artists Craig Campbell and Ashley Killeen, Guitar Center, Enticier Jewelry, Gvantsa Fine Jewelry Designs, Sue Cross, Plastic Ocean, WMMR Radio, The George Michael Story, Rastelli’s Market, Stephanie Faris, Fast Signs, Jazz Sidhu, Dara’s Delights, Rescue Me Boutique and Bonny J. Clayton (Your Web Chick).
Thank you to everyone who has supported this mission. We are humbled by your generosity and I know George is smiling down from Heaven above!
The Freedom Scholarship Fund Staff
Additional funds raised may be held while the selection process is conducted.