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Missy Elliott Donated $50k Toward Affordable Housing in Her Hometown to Help Combat Evictions

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Missy Elliott may be an acclaimed rapper, singer, and record producer, but she still hasn’t forgotten where she came from. She recently donated $50,000 to the Portsmouth Redevelopment Housing Authority, an organization that aims to provide affordable housing to those in need. Elliott’s generous gesture will go towards helping 26 Portsmouth, Virginia residents pay their past-due rent. The iconic rapper came from humble beginnings in Portsmouth, as she spent much of her early life in Virginia where she and her mother endured periods of extreme poverty. Elliott’s donation is her way of paying back the community that raised her.

Elliott understands all too well what it’s like to be poor in Portsmouth, as her upbringing was less than ideal. “Especially for me who has been in a situation like that, my mother is a single mother, that’s what made it important. Because I feel like I can relate to being in a place where you just don’t know where you’re going next,” she said. In an effort to extend gratitude and good fortune to the people of Portsmouth, Missy Elliott presented the Housing Authority with a massive check. “I feel like as artists we are celebrated a lot. So instead of it being about me I wanted it to be about the people here, my hometown,” she said. Elliott’s financial contribution is much appreciated by those who are constantly faced with the threat of eviction due to the high cost of rent.

Determined to find her way out of poverty, Missy Elliott used her talent to become one of the world’s most recognizable entertainers. She has won five Grammy Awards and is the only female rapper to earn a coveted spot in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. Her career has spanned decades and in that time she has amassed a $50 million fortune. No matter how much fame and fortune comes her way, Missy Elliott will never forget what the first half of her life was like. Her mother, Pat Elliott, is grateful to the city of Portsmouth for all that it has given to them through the years. “The people are very caring here in Portsmouth. They are really good people,” she said. “So when we left and my daughter went to different places all over the world, she grabbed that DNA from the beautiful people here. We won’t forget it.”

Alisa Winston, the executive director for the Portsmouth Redevelopment Housing Authority, explained that Elliott’s donation will make a huge difference in the lives of many Portsmouth residents. Portsmouth Mayor Shannon Glover praised Missy Elliott for her kindness and compassion, saying, “It’s a big deal, it’s huge. It keeps families together, and it gives people, once again, hope.”

Missy Elliott paid tribute to her hometown in a recent Instagram post, referring to Virginia as, “Where I was born taught me to drive, taught me faith, [and] taught me humility.” More importantly, she credited her birthplace for something even bigger. “Most of all [Virginia] taught me that the blessings I get are not just for me but to bless someone else.” The people of Portsmouth are equally as proud to have someone like Missy Elliott as part of their community. On October 17 Governor. Glenn Youngkin declared it “Missy Elliott Day ” and presented the rapper with the key to the city.

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