Lady Gaga wants to give back to three communities that were devastated following recent mass shootings in the United States.
The A Star is Born actor announced that she will be “fully funding” 162 classroom projects in El Paso, Texas, Dayton, Ohio, and Gilroy, Calif.
She made the announcement on Facebook, saying that she and her Born This Way Foundation will be partnering with Donors Choose to fund the educational needs of students in the three cities.
According to its website, Donors Choose “empowers public school teachers from across the U.S. to request much-needed materials and experiences for their students.“
“My heart goes out to those who were taken from us too soon and to their families, loved ones and communities who are left to grieve,” the Shallow singer wrote. “Everyone has the right to laws that make them feel safe in their communities.
“In this moment, I want to channel my confusion, frustration and fury into hope. Hope that we are there for each other and for ourselves.”
Lady Gaga said the “14 classrooms in Dayton, 125 classrooms in El Paso and 23 classrooms in Gilroy will now have access to the support they need to inspire their students to work together and bring their dreams to life.”
The 33-year-old singer also used her funding announcement to remind those who are struggling to prioritize their mental health and check in on their loved ones.
“Surviving and recovering from these tragedies also means prioritizing your mental health and checking in on your loved ones,” she wrote. “If you’re struggling, please be brave and tell a trusted someone.
“Don’t be scared to ask for help, I beg you.”
She continued: “If you see a loved one struggling, please be brave and reach out, remind them it’s OK to not be OK and listen to them.”
“We cannot turn away from ourselves. We cannot turn away from our loved ones. We need each other. Don’t turn away,” she concluded.
According to KTVU, the Gilroy Unified School District is set to receive more than $11,000 in funding from Lady Gaga and her foundation.
Gilroy schoolteacher Matt Hungerford said his classroom projects — one for 3D printers and another for motors and control boards — were funded through Donors Choose, and he was shocked to find Lady Gaga was the one who was behind it.
Hungerford told KTVU he hopes the singer’s kind gesture will teach the students an important lesson about coming together.
“Even in tragedy, there could be good,” said Hungerford. “Somebody like a Lady Gaga, a celebrity, it’s really nice to see her give to people. This is our small town coming together. We will survive. We are strong.”
On Aug. 4, a gunman wearing body armour shot and killed nine people and injured at least 27 more in a popular nightlife area in Dayton, Ohio. Police were patrolling the area and killed the suspect.
The attack was the second major mass shooting in the U.S. in 24 hours, following the mass shooting in El Paso, Texas, on Aug. 3, when a gunman opened fire at a shopping centre, killing 22 people and injuring more than two dozen. A suspect was taken into custody.
A gunman opened fire with an assault rifle at a garlic festival in Gilroy, Calif., killing three people and wounding 15 others.
Gilroy police Chief Scot Smithee said the gunman was armed with a rifle and sneaked in through a fence bordering a parking lot next to a creek. He appeared to randomly target people when he opened fire just after 5:30 p.m. on July 28 during the conclusion of the three-day festival, which attracts more than 100,000 people to the city known as the “Garlic Capital of the World.”
—With files from the Associated Press
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