Rapper J. Cole (pictured) is proving that humanitarianism can start at any age! The performer, who is known for his socially conscious raps (including the song “Crooked Smile,” dedicated to Aiyana Stanley-Jones, the 7-year-old shot dead in her home by a Detroit police officer,) is giving back in a unique way by allowing an impoverished single mother with multiple children to live rent-free for two years in his childhood home, according to the podcast “The Combat Jack Show.”
Cole, whose actual name is Jermaine Lamarr Cole remembers what it’s like to live from hand to mouth as he and his brother were raised in poverty by a single mom in Fayetteville, N.C. The 29-year-old “Can’t Get Enough” performer whose father is African-American and mother is German, first lived on a military base when his parents were together. When his folks separated, however, Cole’s mom was forced to take her children to live in a trailer park.
According to Cole, the plunge down in their lifestyle was a shock to their system, “The neighborhood we lived in was f—ed up,” he recalled according to the podcast. “The reason why it had such a big effect on me is that I was coming from somewhere else. I was coming from a military base.”
In due time, Cole’s mom was able to move out of the trailer park—where she was the only white woman—and into a small home which Cole remembers fondly. Unfortunately however, the Grammy Award-nominated hip-hop artist’s mom lost the North Carolina home.
Years later when Cole, who graduated magna cum laude from St. John’s University struck it big in the hip-hop world, he made the decision to buy back the small home that his mom had lost and now is certainly putting it to great use.
“My goal is to have that be a haven for a family,” he said in the podcast. “So every two years, a new family will come in and live rent-free. The idea is that it’s a single mother with multiple kids. I want her kids to feel how I felt when we got the house.”
Watch “Crooked Smile” with TLC below: