On Thursday, the 60-year-old comedian showcased the excellence of Patrick Henry Preparatory in Harlem, New York, which educates kids from some struggling communities. Then, DeGeneres dropped in via live stream to surprise the dumbfounded kids and staff!
After the cheering died down, she revealed that Verizon is helping the school by providing an Innovative Learning Lab, exposing students to new technology and skills like coding, virtual reality and 3D design. On top of that, DeGeneres herself had one more surprise for Patrick Henry Preparatory.
“Well, you’re all very fortunate. You’re all very lucky to have a school like that to go to and have Mr. P [the school’s principal, Dimitrios Pantalitas], someone who cares so much about you,” she told the kids and students before adding, “I’m going to give your school $50,000.”
Understandably, the staff and kids broke out into cheers again, prompting DeGeneres to say, “They’re happy!”
This sweet moment comes just one day after the beloved talk show host had actress Busy Philipps on her show to discuss her new book This Will Only Hurt a Little and her experience with rape as a teenager. The conversation prompted DeGeneres to also opened up about her experience with a similar trauma, mentioning Dr. Christine Blasey Ford’s testimony last week.
"I was 15 and I had something happen to me," DeGeneres explained. "When I watched Dr. Ford — anyone who has had something happen to them, you just get so angry when someone doesn't believe you or says, 'Why did you wait so long?'"
"It's because we're girls and we're taught not to say anything and go along with it," she added. "So you at 14, me at 15, God knows how many people in this audience have had something happen."
The Finding Dory star went on to emphasize that victims, especially children, need to know that they should always speak up about victimization.
"I think this conversation needs to happen more and people need to, first of all, teach your children to speak up, and don't ever keep something in and don't ever be ashamed and think that it's your problem and your fault because it's never your fault,” she said. “You're a child."