About Us - Providing treatment, love & support to families affected by HIV/AIDS.
Co-Founder and Global Ambassador
Alicia Keys is a modern-day Renaissance woman. At age 31, she is an 14-time Grammy Award winner, an actress, an accomplished singer, songwriter, music producer, entrepreneur and a powerful force in the global fight against HIV/AIDS. Since the 2001 debut of her first album, Songs in A Minor, Alicia has built an unparalleled repertoire of hits and accomplishments with more than 30 million albums sold worldwide. In 2005, she became the first female R&B artist to have three consecutive #1 debuts on the Billboard 200 album chart in as many releases.
Alicia has also starred in the TV Micro-series Fresh Takes, created by Dove®, aimed at giving women a fresh take on life in their twenties. She made her big-screen debut in the 2007 crime film Smokin’ Aces and earned further praise for her second motion picture performance in The Nanny Diaries. In 2006, Alicia and her long-time manager Jeff Robinson formed the production company Big PiTa Little PiTa. Together they are developing many multi-cultural and diverse projects and have a first look deal with Disney. Alicia also received rave reviews for her performance in the film The Secret Life of Bees where she appeared alongside Queen Latifah, Dakota Fanning and Jennifer Hudson
In addition to being a prolific artist, Alicia Keys is also a devoted AIDS activist and philanthropist. In 2003 Alicia Keys and Leigh Blake, longtime AIDS activist and film/TV producer, co-founded Keep a Child Alive (KCA), a people’s movement that provides life-saving AIDS medicine and surrounding care to children and families in Africa and India. KCA also provides support to AIDS orphans left behind to keep the most vulnerable children out of harms way.
During Alicia’s first trip to Africa in 2003, she witnessed the drastic impact AIDS can have when left largely unchecked and came to understand AIDS as much more than a deadly disease capable of orphaning children, devastating communities, and stifling economic progress. Ever since, Alicia, along with Leigh Blake, has been the driving force behind Keep a Child Alive.
Thanks to Alicia’s tireless efforts, KCA has been able to raise millions of dollars to care for AIDS patients in Africa and India. As a dedicated Global Ambassador for KCA, Alicia’s work includes well-known media initiatives, such as the “Spirit of a Child” campaign, the controversial “Drug Dealer” campaign and the star-studded “I am African” campaign, spearheaded by Iman and featuring David Bowie, Gwyneth Paltrow, Richard Gere, Sarah Jessica Parker, Lenny Kravitz, and many other top artists.
Alicia has appeared twice on Oprah to represent the organization, and is the host of Keep a Child Alive’s annual Black Ball gala. This legendary event takes place during the fall in New York City and in the summer in London. The Black Ball is a unique fundraiser/concert, hosted by Alicia Keys, where KCA honors the work of remarkable humanitarians who use their will, fame, and courage to change the lives of those devastated by this pandemic. In the past Alicia has shared the stage with David Bowie, Lou Reed, Gwen Stefani, Bono, Annie Lennox, and Lenny Kravitz, amongst others.
Alicia was also a producer of the documentary film Alicia in Africa: Journey to the Motherland, a moving documentary about her 2006 month-long trip to Africa where she meets the courageous children, families and communities affected by the AIDS pandemic. Alicia and Keep a Child Alive made the film accessible to everyone by releasing it as a free download online. This revolutionary mode of distribution has made Alicia in Africa the first film of its kind to be made available to Internet users for free worldwide. Alicia has also helped promote another film about Keep a Child Alive’s work, We Are Together. This uplifting documentary tells the story of the talented Agape Children’s Choir in South Africa.
During her 2008 U.S. concert tour, Alicia introduced the Keep a Child Alive campaign “Text ALIVE” where mobile phone users donate $5 to KCA by simply texting the word “ALIVE” to 90999. Keep a Child Alive is the first charity to have successfully implemented an ongoing texting campaign in the United States. Alicia recently appeared on American Idol to introduce a performance by 15-year-old Rwandan rapper Noah, who is a patient at the KCA-funded Icyuzuzo Clinic in Kigali, Rwanda. On American Idol, Alicia asked American Idol viewers to “Text ALIVE” to support other KCA patients like Noah, and inspired more than 100,000 people to text!
Well aware of grim state of AIDS in the world today, the battle against the disease has become Alicia’s own calling and motivation. She best summarizes her passion, explaining in her June 2008 article for CNN.com, “Helping keep a child, or mother, or father or brother or sister alive means turning the worst epidemic of our lifetime into the greatest victory of our generation.”