Philip Bailey could have rested on his laurels after he, as co-lead singer of Earth, Wind & Fire, was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2000.
But 7 years later he and his daughter Trinity founded the Music Is Unity Foundation, which provides grants to organizations to help foster children aging out of the system with no support network.
"It touched my heart to see that there was [this] segment of society, and many times, you don't see the struggle that someone is going through because they're not physically disabled or outwardly physically hurting," Bailey said.
Wednesday more than half-a-dozen foster kids from the Sacramento area will get to go backstage before the Earth, Wind & Fire concert at Memorial Auditorium. With education in mind, the band will introduce eight young people to different careers in music before the show.
"To have no support, no direction, no finances and no place to turn is a hurting position to be in,” Bailey said.
The backstage tour is intended to show kids that education and careers in music are attainable.
The Music Is Unity Foundation provides grants of between $5,000 and $25,000 each to organizations that work with this group of young people. Donors and some proceeds from the band's shows fund the foundation.
According to a report by the Annie E. Casey Foundation, 17,000 children aged out of the foster system nationwide last year.
In California and 24 other states as of 2018, foster kids age out of the system at 21. The age is 18 in the rest of the states, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
Correction: A previous version of this story incorrectly stated when the Music Is Unity Foundation was founded. It was started in 2007.