Janelle Monáe, Isaias Hernandez, and Billie Eilish Honored for Activism Work

Janelle Monáe, singer and founding father of the WondaLunch meals program, and Isaias Hernandez, the environmental activist behind the social media account Queer Brown Vegan, have been lately honored with Inspiration Awards at Assist + Feed’s inaugural fundraising profit in Los Angeles.

Based in 2020 by Maggie Baird—the mom of award-winning musicians Billie Eilish and Finneas—Assist + Feed was initially set as much as repair two pandemic issues in a single hit: to financially assist the vegan restaurant scene in Los Angeles and to donate meals to individuals in want, together with hospital staff and weak households.

VegNews.supportandfeed.gettyMichael Kovac / Getty Photographs for Assist & Feed

The evolution of Assist + Feed

At first, the group supported individuals to position orders with vegan eating places in Los Angeles, and the meals they ordered would then be donated. However within the final three years, Assist + Feed has grown exponentially. Now, in partnership with greater than 80 neighborhood organizations throughout the US and greater than 60 native and minority-owned eating places, the nonprofit has distributed nearly 400,000 meals to underserved communities. 

It has additionally expanded internationally, has partnerships throughout Europe, the UK, and Australia, and runs world campaigns, just like the Plant-Based mostly Pledge, which inspires individuals to eat one plant-based meal a day for a month.

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The brand new occasion was a celebration of the nonprofit’s progress and was additionally meant to honor advocates for its trigger. Alongside Monáe and Hernandez, Julie Schmid, considered one of Assist + Feed’s greater than 130 volunteers, and Baird’s kids have been additionally given awards. 

“Contributing financially has felt like a deep cheat code in comparison with how a lot different individuals have contributed to this,” Finneas mentioned on the occasion, per Selection. “Right here’s what really occurred: Billie and I made a bunch of music in our bed room. We received wealthy and we paid off our mother’s mortgage and he or she circled and began a nonprofit instantly.”

Talking to her mom, Eilish added, “Take a look at all these individuals who assist you and all of the individuals world wide who assist you. It’s such an incredible factor. And I’m so impressed by you. And I’m so pleased with you.”

The singer additionally labored along with her mother and Assist + Feed to arrange the Overheated occasion in London in 2022, which coincided along with her Happier Than Ever World Tour. The occasion, which turned the O2 enviornment vegan, came about over the course of six days in a bid to boost consciousness of local weather motion. The occasion returned for someday in August 2023 at Flippers Curler Boogie Palace.

VegNews.supportandfeedawards.gettyMichael Kovac / Getty Photographs for Assist & Feed

Honoring plant-based advocates

Monáe’s meals program WondaLunch (a part of her wider firm Wondaland Arts Society) additionally helped to feed weak individuals by means of the COVID-19 pandemic and remains to be going robust immediately. In partnership with Assist + Feed, it gives plant-based meals and pantry objects to households throughout Los Angeles.

“I’m a baby of service. I bear in mind what it was like to not have meals on the desk. What’s it like for Thanksgiving and Christmas, to need to get canned items out of your church, or the Salvation Military, or an aunt or your grandmother—I do not forget that,” Monáe mentioned in a speech on the fundraising occasion.

“I bear in mind the stigma of what it was to be poor and the way we handled poor individuals. I bear in mind being embarrassed utilizing my mom’s EBT card … and so all I’ve wished to do and what I wished to do with Assist + Feed and with Wondalunch, is to erase that narrative,” Monáe added.

Hernandez additionally spoke on the occasion; the activist and local weather schooling influencer has labored with Assist + Feed on a variety of events, and is among the nonprofit’s 4 digital creators, alongside Sam Bentley, Reshma Shah, and Hannah Testa.

Writing about his Inspiration Award on Instagram, which he acquired for his work in serving to to develop a meals justice curriculum, Hernandez thanked Baird and the Assist + Feed crew.

“Since transferring again to Los Angeles, I’m so grateful to be giving again to my neighborhood right here the place I grew up,” he added. “I wish to proceed instructing youngsters the significance of meals justice schooling whereas permitting them to have the instruments to ask important questions. It’s because of you all on right here who’ve supported me as an open-access schooling platform to have the ability to be in numerous areas. That’s why I select environmental schooling as a service of affection.”

For extra on Assist + Feed, learn:


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