After four years in business, The Kanye West Foundation, a charitable organization co-founded by the hip hop star and his late mother, Donda West, has closed its doors.
According to a report in the New York Times, the charity, which sponsored programs designed to reduce high school dropout rates and promote involvement in the arts, has been unceremoniously shuttered--without so much as a press release.
The Times has obtained an email sent out to friends of the former Foundation CEO Joseph Collins that shows he has been looking for employment since last month due to the charity's closing.
“I am reaching out to let you know that the Kanye West Foundation (kanyewestfoundation.org) has officially closed it doors after a successful 4+ years of programming and events,” Collins said. “It has been an incredible experience working with Kanye and the board to realize his mother’s vision and I am honored to have been given the opportunity to lead the Foundation.”
So far representatives for Mr. West and the foundation administrators, including Collins, have been mum on the reason for closing.
The foundation's chief program was "Loop Dreams," a summer initiative that taught students the art and history of hip hop and music production in addition to life skills such as self-discipline, financial literacy and time management.
The charity peaked in public awareness in 2009 when it held a special Kanye West concert at the Chicago Theater that was made into a documentary for the Fuse network. The concert served as a prize for students who set and achieved goals to improve their grades and attendance records.
(Photo: Walik Goshorn/Retna Ltd.)