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Food & Hunger

Swedish DJ Avicii Donated Millions to Hunger Charities Before He Died

Swedish DJ Avicii, whose real name was Tim Bergling, died in Oman on April 20 at the age of 28. 

Now, a week after his death, it has emerged that Bergling donated millions of dollars to organizations working to end malnutrition around the world.

Through a number of chart-topping hits and sell-out club sessions, for which he brought in fees of over $250,000, he managed to amass a fortune of more than $109 million.

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In 2012, he went on a 27-date tour called “House for Hunger” around America — and donated his entire income from the tour to the US charity Feeding America, according to the New York Post

In the US, one in every eight people struggles with hunger. The charity Feeding America has a network of 200 food banks, 60,000 food pantries and meal programs in operation, according to the website. 

The charity aims to help get nutritious food to people in need, and help people to build a more food-secure future for themselves. 

Following the tour, Avicii also then donated a further $1 million to the charity.

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Just a year later, in 2013, Bergling reportedly gave another million euros to the Swedish aid organization Radiojälpen, in support of its “hunger aid” campaign to reduce malnutrition. 

“Rest in peace Tim Bergling, and THANK YOU because you laid the foundation for ‘hunger aid’ with your generous contribution — 1 million euros — to Radiojälpen,” the organisation’s secretary general Anna Hedenmo tweeted

The DJ, who found international success with singles such as “Hey Brother” and “Wake Me Up”, said in an interview in 2013 that he wasn’t motivated by money. 

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“I discovered when I started making money that I didn’t really need it,” he said. “When you have such an excess of money you don’t need, the most sensible, most human and completely obvious thing is to give to people in need.” 

But his relentless touring schedule — which saw him play 320 shows in just one year — took its toll on his health. He spent 11 days in hospital in January 2012 with acute pancreatitis, reportedly caused by heavy drinking. 

Then, in 2016, Bergling announced that he would no longer do live performances because of health problems as a result of stress and alcohol abuse. 

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Following his death, the cause of which has not been publicly confirmed, his family released a statement saying: “Our beloved Tim was a seeker, a fragile artistic soul searching for answers to existential questions. An over-achieving perfectionist who travelled and worked hard at a pace that led to extreme stress.” 

“The person you were and your music will keep your memory alive,” it said.

Global Citizen campaigns to achieve the UN’s Global Goals, which include action on ending hunger and malnutrition. You can join us by taking action on this issue here