Rihanna received Harvard Foundation’s Peter J. Gomes Humanitarian Award at a ceremony on Monday night and thankfully for us, there is video of her acceptance speech.
She began her speech joking about being at Harvard in an epic way, pulling her pony tail back like a true boss. “So I made it to Harvard. Never thought I would be able to say that in my life.”
“Thank you Harvard University for this great honor. I am incredibly humbled by this to be acknowledged at this magnitude for something that in truth I have never wanted credit for.”
Rihanna remembered as a child wanting to help people.“When I was five or six years old I remember watching TV and I would see these commercials about other children suffering in other parts of the world. And the commercials wanted you to give 25 cents to save a child’s life and I would think to myself how many 25 cents I could save up to save all the kids in Africa. I would say to myself when I grow up and I can get rich I am going to save kids all over the world. I just didn’t know I would be in the position to do that by the time I was a teenager.”
“At 17 I started my career here in America and by the age of 18 I started my first charity organization.”
Later in her speech, Rihanna moved on with a call to action for the audience to step up to the plate and help other people anyway they can. “I know that each and everyone of you has the opportunity to help someone else. All you have to do is help one person expecting nothing in return. To me, that is a humanitarian.”
Watch Rihanna accept her award at around the 1:14:00 mark: