British national treasure Elton John is just as recognised for his chart-toppers including Your Song and Candle in the Wind, as he is for being a pivotal voice in the fight against HIV/AIDS via his Elton John AIDS Foundation.
He was recognised by the Queen for his services to charity not once, but twice – in 1998 when he received a Knighthood and in 2020 when he was appointed Member of the Order of the Companions of Honour. More recently, Elton, 74, received the Legion d'Honneur from President Macron, the Companion of Honour in the UK.
Elton makes sure to give back to Royal Academy of Music, where he studied. Since 2002, when he was awarded an Honorary Doctorate by the academy, he has supported its students through the Elton John Scholarship Fund. Countless young musicians have been able to study at the academy because of the essential support they have received from the fund.
"Elton John's scholarships have transformed many people's lives, and he never wants to a make a fuss about it. His class is beyond words" - Jonathan Freeman-Attwood CBE, principal at the Royal Academy of Music where Elton studied
The Academy's principal, Jonathan Freeman-Attwood CBE, told HELLO!: "Elton John is royalty at the Royal Academy of Music and it's not just because he's one of our super-famous former students.
"It's all the stuff no one sees – the private support he gives me, the advocacy for the place and his dedication to our students. Elton wants to give opportunities to talented musicians who wouldn't otherwise be able to study. His scholarships have transformed many people's lives, and he never wants to a make a fuss about it. His class is beyond words."
It was in 1992 that he set up the Elton John AIDS Foundation with the mission to eradicate the AIDS epidemic by 2030. To date, the foundation has saved five million lives, raised a whopping more than $515m, and supported over 3,000 projects.
Elton's foundation remains one of the leading independent AIDS organisations in the world. It is the third top funder of HIV/AIDS grants in East Asia and Southeast Asia and is the number one philanthropic funder in Eastern Europe and Central Asia for HIV/AIDS.
But the Rocket Man singer isn't just devoted to the fight against AIDS. He and his husband David Furnish set up the Elton John Charitable Trust to make charitable contributions outside the world of HIV/AIDS. Since its formation in 2007, the EJCT has supported over 100 charities across a multitude of causes.
Additionally, the Elton John Sports Fund supports budding athletes from more than 50 sports, by providing annual awards of £2,000 to help them with essential training and competition costs they wouldn't otherwise be able to afford.
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