Keri Hilson could be doing anything with her celebrity — partying, shopping, creating nothing but music — but the singer spends her free moments trying to do good. Last year, MTV enlisted Hilson to be the 2012 ambassador for its Staying Alive Foundation, whose mission has been to “encourage, energize and empower young leaders around the world who are involved in HIV/AIDS awareness, education and prevention campaigns.” One of her missions was to lead the team's AIDS Walk New York that took place last Sunday.
When asked how she was prepping for the walkathon, Hilson said her normal workouts had already been helping her get ready for the five to six mile walk and she'd be wearing Under Armour shoes and clothes with plenty of sunblock underneath her makeup to protect her skin.
In addition to lending her time to AIDS awareness, Hilson is also passionate about breast cancer prevention and empowering young girls to pursue their dreams.
"I love to inspire young girls to not shy away from adversity. I like to strip my persona — the hair, the makeup, the heels and their preconceived notions of me — and just talk to them as a woman; as a confident girl who followed her dreams," Hilson said. "Other than that, I like to show up where I’m needed and where I can bring joy to those who need it like orphanages and children's hospitals. I’m overwhelmed by the difference I can make by sharing my passion and the things that I’ve learned with them. I feel like I get just as much as they get out of me being there.”
For others who would love to become a part of something greater than themselves but don't know what to do, Hilson suggests dedicating what you can of your time to a cause that you're absolutely passionate about.
“Don’t be intimidated by the many, many charities that are out there; and the many, many people that are asking for your time. Just do something that you’re passionate about, even if it’s one thing. Whether it’s per year, per month or per week, lend your time, your efforts, and, when it’s appropriate, your hard earned money to a charity that’s close to you," she says. "I happen to be passionate about many things, so I lend my celebrity, my platform, my time and efforts to many causes. I think it’s the easiest way to do good in this world.”
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