Lil Jon (real name Jonathan Smith) is perhaps best known for popularizing Crunk, a subgenre of hip-hop that originated in Atlanta, and gained popularity in the early to mid 2000s. While the 47-year-old producer and rapper is still doing his thing on the music end, he is also using his fame and wealth to help those in need.
In partnership with the charity Pencils of Promise, Lil Jon helped fund a school in Ghana which broke ground on construction last month. The school, which will be named Mafi Atitekpo DA Primary School, is the 2nd Lil Jon is helping to build in Ghana. According to CNN, the "Yeah" producer donated $70,000 of his own money to build that school and another, called Abomayaw D.A. Kindergarten, which opened last October.
When asked about his donations, he said, "I'm all about helping children … Children are our future and every child deserves to have an environment where they can learn and flourish and gain knowledge."
The Pencils of Promise charity was created by Adam Braun, who is the brother of music manager Scooter Braun. According to the charity's website, they "create schools, programs and global communities around the common goal of education for all."
Lil Jon first traveled to Ghana last October, and he said that his experience while visiting the country compelled him to help out.
"When I saw the conditions where these children were trying to learn, one community they had a big mango tree and two classes were sitting under the mango tree and that's not a condition conducive with learning … Kids are going to get distracted, plus it's extremely hot. It compelled me to want to do more," he told CNN.
"Children shouldn't have to suffer for any reason," he said. "One of these kids could grow up to be a scientist, a lawyer, an astronaut, the president of their country. I could create an environment where all these things could happen," he said.