Today BET Networks announced new additions to the line-up of the 20th Annual BET Awards, honoring prolific activists in the Black community and recognizing those who unfortunately left us in 2020. The world endured incredible losses this year including NBA Legend Kobe Bryant and Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Little Richard. In memoriam of those great losses, Grammy Award-winning global icon and superstar Lil Wayne will give tribute to Kobe Bryant, and the multi-talented Wayne Brady will honor Little Richard.
BET Network also announced Beyoncé Knowles-Carter will be honored with the prestigious Humanitarian Award at this year’s awards.
A global phenomenon, Beyoncé is one of the most successful artists to date, with over 100 million records sold worldwide, numerous awards, including 24 Grammys, and a catalog of timeless music. Along with her illustrious music career, she has acted in several films, including Dreamgirls, Cadillac Records and, most recently, Disney‘s The Lion King, which became the highest-grossing animated film of all time. On top of her numerous successes, Beyoncé is also a philanthropist who has created several initiatives to give back to the world at large.
In 2017, as a part of her BeyGOOD initiative, Beyoncé established “Formation Scholars,” to encourage and support young women who are unafraid to think outside the box and are bold, creative, conscious and confident. The scholarship awarded students from four colleges. That year, she partnered with UNICEF to create ‘BeyGood4Burundi.’ This multi-year partnership was established to bring safe water and sanitation to the small, landlocked East African country of Burundi. In 2018 she created the Homecoming Scholars Award Program, following her historic performance at Coachella, which benefited students at eight HBCU colleges and universities.
Recently, in response to the pandemic, Beyoncé teamed up with her mother, Ms. Tina Knowles Lawson, for the #IDIDMYPART mobile testing initiative to encourage residents in Houston in Black and brown communities, disproportionately affected by COVID-19, to know their status. She has also donated to support organizations on the ground helping to meet basic health and mental needs in vulnerable communities, affected by the crisis. For Juneteenth, following the release of her latest song, “Black Parade,” Beyoncé announced the creation of BeyGOOD’s Black Business Fund, administered by the National Urban League, to support Black-owned small businesses.
Additionally, the 20th Annual BET Awards is proud to honor Nicolas Johnson, Timbaland, Swizz Beatz, and D-Nice as the 2020 Shine A Light Honorees, which recognizes exceptional resilience, ingenuity and creativity in the face of adversity. This year’s honorees demonstrate how art and education can unite and inspire even during the most challenging of times. Assa Traoré, a French anti-racist activist, has been selected as the 2020 BET International Global Good recipient, which recognizes global celebrities and public figures who use their platform for social responsibility and goodness while demonstrating a commitment to the welfare of the global Black community.
Tune in this Sunday at 8/7c on BET, BET HER and CBS for the BET Awards 2020. Check your local listings for more information.