Actress and writer Issa Rae was profoundly impacted by Alton Sterling’s murder by the police on July 5. It led her to set up a campaign to raise college funds for the five children the Baton Rouge, Louisiana native left behind. The #AltonSterlingFamily Scholarship was created Wednesday, and $325,000 was raised in just 21 hours.
Rae has no formal relationship with the family, writing on the GoFundMe campaign page she is “just sympathetic and empathetic” to the situation. The Huffington Post reports the Insesure star initially set out to raise $40,000 for the Sterling children. She revealed plans for the scholarship Wednesday afternoon, sharing the link several minutes later.
“Thank you for helping us raise the goal!” she wrote Wednesday evening. “I just got off the phone with the Sterling family attorney who is aware of the GoFundMe and has asked me to call back tomorrow, as the family is (naturally) overwhelmed at this time. Will keep you all posted. In the meantime, keep spreading the word!”
She later shared an update about increasing the goal to $200,000.
“Wow! $100k in 6 hours. This is so powerful,” she wrote. “Can we get to $200k? I’m doubling my pledge. That would be $40k for each of his 5 kids to go to college. Thank you all for uniting through the pain.”
Many have voiced their support for the fundraiser.
“Damn. Thank you so much, Issa for using your platform and doin’ this,” wrote Hope Freeman on the GoFundMe page. “Bless you, sis.”
Shyne Coldchain also praised the campaign on Twitter.