A hallmark of Chance the Rapper’s music is his boundless joy, a quality that is expressed not just in giddy melodies and choirs singing praises to the heavens, but also in his heartfelt lyrics. At times he can feel like the living embodiment of positivity, shining a light of hope and encouragement in a genre that rarely offers such feelings so openheartedly.
Of course, the music barely scratches the surface. Compared to the average person, Chance the Rapper comes close to being a literal saint. His infectious, feel-good nature has extended to the good works he does in the community. Whether it’s getting people to exercise their civic duty to vote, supporting student-led strikes toward gun violence or funding public schools out of his own pocket, Chance is a rare force of unadulterated good in this world.
In honor of his birthday, we’ve rounded up 15 moments where Chance the Rapper proved he’s the nicest person, like, ever.
Chance the Viral Tweeter
In May 2014, Chance and his dad started a social media campaign (via his prefered platform of Twitter, naturally) called #SaveChicago, in an effort to curb the city’s escalating murder rate over Memorial Day weekend. The campaign resulted in 42 hours without a single gun-related homicide in Chicago.
Chance the Outstanding Youth
Chance was awarded Chicago’s Outstanding Youth Award for his continued involvement in and contributions to youth activity in November 2014.
Chance the Fundraiser
At the beginning of 2015, Chance, his brother Taylor Bennett, and Sway helped raise $100,000 for Chicago schools through the Get Schooled Program, providing new technology equipment to six local elementary schools.
Chance the Open Mic Host
Lil Chano from 79th has been hosting bi-monthly “Open Mic” nights in conjunction with the Chicago Cultural Center since 2015. Meant to serve as a creative outlet for young artists in the city, it’s a free event for teens with a valid school I.D. Chicago’s own Kanye West has stopped by, as well as Vic Mensa, and more recently Big Sean made an appearance.
Chance the Campaign Man
Following up from his #SaveChicago Twitter campaign in 2014, Chance participated in the Faith In Action campaign in Chicago when Memorial Day weekend 2015 rolled around to help prevent gun violence in the city yet again.
Chance the Festival Man
In the summer of 2015, Chance organized the first Teens in the Park Festival, a free park concert that featured local acts like his band, The Social Experiment, as well as none other than Kendrick Lamar.
Chance the Field Trip Chaperone
In July 2015, Chance and NoName took a group of 6 to 11 year olds Cole Park Elementary School students on a field trip to Field Museum in Chicago.
Chance the Cinephile
Chano rented out an entire movie theatre in February 2017 so Chicagoans could see Jordan Peele’s Academy Award-winning film Get Out. Then more recently, he doubled his previous offer with two theatres for film enthusiasts to see Marshall.
Chance the Big Money Philanthropist
After the State of Illinois cut public school funding, Chance decided to take the matter into his own hands, donating $1 million to Chicago Public schools in March 2017, getting a shoutout from none other than former FLOTUS Michelle Obama.
Chance the Griller
Last September, he hit the grill at Nando’s in Chicago to celebrate the opening of their Michigan Avenue restaurant, to raise money in support of Chicago Public Schools through his Social Works charity
Chance the Lyfter
In October 2017, our boy Chance and his SocialWorks charity announced a collaboration with transportation app Lyft called Round Up and Donate. It allows Chicago Lyft riders to simply round up their fare to the nearest dollar so that the remainder goes to the New Chance: Arts & Literature Fund.
Chance the Weather Man
Chance graced Chicago’s local news station WGN with his presence back in December 2017. Clad in a Gucci belt and his signature “3” hat, the rapper delivered the weather report like a pro.
Chance the Call Out Man
After Chano called out Heineken for a TV ad that he thought was “terribly racist” on Twitter (where else?), the Dutch beer company pulled the ad. More importantly, Chance started a conversation about representation of race in the media.