Shangela has gone from the RuPaul’s Drag Race runway to worldwide stages and recently has landed on the fantastic new HBO series We’re Here. Her latest endeavor though, involves giving back directly to her community. Shangela has started a charity fund, appropriately titled Feed the Queens, with a purpose to “galvanize support in the fight against food insecurity among drag queens, drag kings and trans drag performers within the nightlife and performing arts communities.” The goal is simple: raise $100,000 to help out of work drag performers nationwide.
With nightlife being shut down due to the pandemic and a subsequent outcry of hunger needs, Feed The Queens is a national initiative founded when the community truly can use it the most. The goal is simple; raise over $100,000 through online donations, corporate support and foundation grants. These funds will be used to distribute grocery gift cards to 1,000 or more applicants, with a designated portion of those funds allocated to performing persons of color.
This was a big job, and Shangela was able to find the perfect partner to assist her in this massive project. To help facilitate the effort, with logistics, backend facilitation, and to make the donations tax-deductible, Shangela partnered with The Actors Fund. “I was thankful to find a fiscal partner, which is an organization that’s been committed to helping people in the entertainment industry,” Shangela told People.
Feed the Queens is a charity, but Shangela is confident the community will rally and come out stronger from this experience. “Drag queens are truly some of the most resourceful people in the world,” she told People. “But we have to remember that our community is a marginalized community indeed, with a large population of marginalized people. We are accustomed to not always being able to have access to resources. Not only because we’re drag queens, but think about the different layers in our drag community. We have a lot of queens of color, myself included, from various racial backgrounds. We have people from different socioeconomic backgrounds. We have trans performers. And you know that statistically, resources aren’t always allocated to those groups in ways that they are to some others.”
Shangela remains determined to raise the $100,000, a number with particular meaning to this standout queen. “I went to RuPaul’s Drag Race 19,000 times and I never won a $100,000,” she laughs. (She competed on Season 2, Season 3, and a controversial season of All Stars, without snagging the crown). “But now I want everyone to join me in hopefully getting that feeling, but for queens in need.”
For Information on Feed The Queens & to donate, head over to feedthequeens.com