Rihanna Gives Powerful Speech After Accepting Humanitarian Award At Harvard

Rihanna finally accepted her well-deserved humanitarian award yesterday, attending the ceremony at Harvard University.

The singer was honoured with this year’s award by the prestigious university as a thank you for all her humanitarian efforts, such as setting up a breast cancer diagnosis and treatment facility in Barbados and founding a scholarship program for young Caribbean people studying in the U.S.

The Barbadian pop star took to the podium to receive the award, which in previous years has been given to the likes of Pakistani activist Malala Yousafazi and fellow musician Lionel Richie among many others.

Getty Images

Rihanna gave a very powerful and touching speech as she accepted the award, opening it by joking that she’d ‘finally made it to Harvard’.

The 29-year old went on to talk about her passion for humanitarianism which she has had since a young age,

When I was 5 or 6 years old, I remember watching TV and I would see these commercials and I was watching other children suffer in other parts of the world. I would think to myself, “I wonder how many 25 cents I could save up to save all the kids in Africa?” And I would say to myself, “When I grow up and I get rich, I’m gonna save kids all over the world.” I just didn’t know I would be in a position to do that by the time I was a teenager.

Getty Images

All you need to do is help one person, expecting nothing in return. To me, that is a humanitarian. What that little girl watching those commercials didn’t know is that you don’t have to be rich to be a humanitarian, you don’t have to be rich to help somebody. You don’t have to be famous, you don’t even have to be college educated. But it starts with your neighbour. You just do whatever you can to help in any way that you can.

The ‘Anti’ singer was given the award by Allen Counter, the director of the Harvard Foundation.