Denzel Washington Donates $1 million to ‘Save Africa’s Children’

“I’m very proud to be black, but black is not all I am. That’s my cultural, historical background — my genetic makeup. But it’s not all of who I am, nor is it the basis from which I answer every question.”

Denzel Washington

I t may be argued whether Academy Award winning actor Denzel Washington is the best in Hollywood. There is, however, no argument or question that, at least in my not so humble opinion, Denzel Washington is the most gifted black actor on this planet. He is also an equally successful film producer and director.

Of late, however, Washington has become something of a top tier philanthropist as well.

According to, Washington has just increased his fan base by several orders of magnitude after donating $1 million to Save Africa’s Children, a non-profit dedicated to helping children — especially orphans — impacted by HIV/AIDS throughout sub-Saharan Africa.

The Atlanta Black Star Newspaper reports that Save Africa’s Children was founded in Los Angeles in 2001 by Bishop Charles E. Blake. Blake says that because of Washington’s largess, Save can now expand its mission from that of a mere caretaker of afflicted children to support of active research into eradication of AIDS and poverty throughout the continent and Haiti.
Washington’s contribution allows the program to also broaden its feeding programs, schools and daycare centers.

Officially, as Save Africa’s Children’s website indicates, its mission is to “provide direct support and care for orphans and vulnerable children affected by AIDS, poverty and war throughout sub-Saharan Africa and Caribbean.”
Save is not alone in its quest.

It partners with churches, individuals, grassroots organizations and government and corporate sectors — both in Africa, Europe and the US. Its ultimate goal is to build and maintain a “diverse and dynamic movement” that will help restore the future for as many African children as possible.

Washington is not new to the philanthropy game. He has worked with and supported Project Angel Food, the Elton John AIDS Foundation and the Entertainment Industry Foundation, according to
However, cites what it says Washington considers his favorite charity. He and Pauletta, his wife of 30 years, fund and run their own scholarship program. It’s called the Pauletta and Denzel Washington Family Gifted Scholars Program In Neuroscience. That’s right, neuroscience. This program provides money to students who wish to become brain surgeons or other neuroscience professionals.

According to Save’s website, other celebrity donors and supporters include, but are by no means limited to: [The Estate of] Natalie Cole, Kanye West, Ray Romano, Louis Gossett, Jr., Courtney B. Vance and Angela Bassett.

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Although HIV/AIDS has been brought under some control throughout Africa, it remains the number one killer in many sub-Saharan nations. And although the costs of the relatively new and effective retrovirus “cocktails” have diminished significantly over the years, these treatments are still far beyond the reach of most of those afflicted with HIV/AIDS in sub-Saharan Africa. A full 25 percent of the population of South Africa still remains afflicted by this scourge.

As Washington and many others realize, the most tragic victims of this disease are children — those who are born with it or orphaned by it. Save Africa’s Children and the Washingtons are to be commended for fighting the good fight, and for highlighting this issue.

Originally published at

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