Musician Donates Album Proceeds to Mental Health America

Brandon Fox is a singer from Chicago. His style is a mix between R&B and pop, with inspiration taken from Michael Jackson, Bruno Mars, and Stevie Wonder.

Fox’s current path was shaped by two parents heavily affected by mental health issues. Both parents struggled with addiction and self-medication, to the point where Fox’s father committed suicide. Seeing his own risk rise, Fox turned to music as therapy.

“It [mental illness] attacked our family like cancer,” he said in a video made earlier this year, announcing his partnership with Mental Health America.

Back in April, Fox launched an album called Remedy, inspired by his personal struggle with mental health, his family, and how the obstacles to seeking treatment shaped his life. He pledged to donate the entirety of Remedy’s profits to Mental Health America.

Mental Health America is a nonprofit that dates back to 1909, focused on addressing the mental health care needs of all. Their philosophy is that conditions should be treated early and seriously. The goal? To halt or reverse progressive symptoms and give each person their best chance at an overall healthy life.

Fox’s Remedy album spent a week in the top 30 chart on iTunes when it was released. While it is unknown as to exactly how much the album raised for charity, the response on Fox’s fanpage has been warm and positive.

On Saturday, November 10, Fox will be upping his contribution via a free benefit show at Bassline in Chicago, with all donations going to Mental Health America. In an interview with WGN Radio, Fox said the show will include several new pieces, which will act as unofficial additions to the Remedy album

Tickets to the Saturday night show are free, with a suggested $5 minimum donation. Bassline is located at 2239 S. Michigan Avenue, and the show begins at 6 pm.


Nonprofit Will Make the Most of Chicago’s Obama Library

The library named after President Obama will be built in the Jackson Park neighborhood of Chicago. It is expected to bring with it some changes to the surrounding neighborhoods.

Real estate developers are already circling to buy up land to resell or build on. In response, a number of Chicago organizations have joined forces to form a new nonprofit focused on the economic development of Woodlawn, Washington Park, and other nearby neighborhoods.

There is a decent amount of vacant land held by the city and private owners in those neighborhoods which could come up for grabs very soon. But rather than let this turn into a capitalist feeding frenzy, the new (still unnamed) nonprofit will bring together a board of about 20 people to help ensure that changes benefit the whole region.

Among the coalition is the Obama Foundation, University of Chicago, the City of Chicago, South Shore Works, Washington Park Consortium, and the Network of Woodlawn. While each of those organizations is expected to have a member on the board, the rest will come from community members. The nonprofit was started by Reverends Torrey Barrett and Byron Brazier.

There is a great deal of experience behind this new organization so it shouldn’t be too difficult to get things going. The group has already started forming before the library project even starts.

Nonprofits dedicated to the economic growth or strength of local communities are all too often only conceptualized after those communities start to suffer problems. By getting the group started now, it’s board can help direct any new development so that it benefits and employs people in the communities that will come to host Obama’s library. Such forward thinking is in line with the former president’s beliefs on urban development. It is a good fit for library, and its likely made Obama extremely proud.

Donation News

Art Institute of Chicago Gets Largest Gift Ever

Great news from the Art Institute of Chicago: it has received the largest philanthropic gift in their history a few weeks ago!

According to the Chicago Tribune, a major private contemporary art collection with the value estimated at $400 million is being donated to the Art Institute of Chicago by local philanthropists Stefan Edlis and Gael Neeson, in what the museum is calling the largest gift of art in its history. This is incredibly fortunate for the Art Institute, and will bring further recognition to the Art Institute and the entire city of Chicago.

Of the 42 total pieces, there are works from famous artists including Andy Warhol, Jasper Johns, and many others spanning from 1953 to 2011. With 9 pieces from Andy Warhol, experts have claimed that it is one of the most significant collections of its kind in the entire world.

“It’s a powerful statement to have a collection of this international stature staying here in Chicago,” Robert Levy, chairman of the Art Institute’s board, told the Chicago Tribune. “It’s unbelievably exciting for the Art Institute, for the city of Chicago, for the entire art community of Chicago. It’s all good.”

The Art Institute will begin displaying the collection in its second-floor galleries of its Modern Wing beginning in January.

Stefan Edlis and Gael Neeson boast a collection of 200 works that they keep in Aspen, Colorado. They are some of the top art collectors in the world, and great philanthropists as well.

At Philanthropic People, we thank these two philanthropists for their generosity!

What do you think of this wonderful donation to the Art Institute of Chicago? What is your favorite kind of art?