Miley Cyrus has regularly hit the headlines over the past few years for all the wrong reasons. The 24-year-old star, however, has recently turned a corner in her personal life, giving up the drugs many have come to associate with her.
Last week, she appeared on The Ellen DeGeneres Show to promote her latest album Younger Now. But conversation soon turned to her charity, the Happy Hippy Foundation, which she founded in 2014 to tackle youth homelessness.
Thanks to the devastation caused by Hurricane Harvey last month, thousands of Americans have found themselves without roofs over their heads, and Ellen revealed that Miley was going to donate $500,000 to the relief fund.
Homelessness is a subject close to the singer’s heart, and she caused a stir in 2014 when she brought a homeless youth, Jesse Helt, to the VMA awards as her date and allowed him to accept the award for video of the year on her behalf.
But as soon as Ellen brought up the subject of Miley’s extremely generous donation, the singer began to tear up–echoing the feelings of many Americans who have been touched by the plight of Texans affected by Hurricane Harvey.
After telling the young singer that her generosity was “amazing”, Miley was unable to expand on her feelings about the current crisis, saying, “I can’t really talk about it. I don’t know why. It makes me so upset”.
Since Hurricane Harvey devastated the state of Texas at the end of August, countless tales of heroism and personal loss have emerged, with over 40,000 homes being lost to the deadly storm in Huston.
Natural disasters often appear in the news, however, Hurricane Harvey was the most deadly storm to hit the US in decade, and, because it struck so close to home, it was easy for Americans to put themselves in the shoes of those affected.
“My grandmother’s sitting here, my mom’s here, and I go home to my seven dogs, and…if I didn’t have that anymore, it’d just be really hard,” Miley revealed, empathizing with those who have been affected by the disaster.
“So I’m really happy to help any way that I can,” Miley said. “And I hope people understand, and can put themselves in those people’s shoes, and just know what it feels like to have everything taken away from you.”
It has been estimated that the recovery cost of Hurricane Harvey will make it one of the most expensive storms to ever hit the US, with initial estimates suggesting that it could cost upwards of $180 billion.
To put it in context, that’s $20 billion more than the damage caused by Hurricane Katrina which devastated New Orleans in 2005.
However, you do not need to have a spare $500,000 to make a difference, and Buzzfeed has compiled a list of ways you can help with the recovery operation here–such as by offering to house people affected by the disaster.
If you are financially able to, you can also donate to the relief effort through the Happy Hippy foundation.
We wish a swift recovery to all who have been affected by Hurricane Harvey.
These are some of the everyday heroes who have donned capes to help the victims of this natural disaster: