Tameka Foster-Raymond Talks Charity, Blogs And Usher
Photo Credit: Robert Ector
The marriage between R&B singer Usher and Tameka Foster Raymond maybe coming to an end, but Tameka’s personal life has continued to stay a HOT topic on internet blogs and websites.
I briefly spoke with Tameka on Friday (July 24th) about her Atlanta based non-profit organization The Lost Ones and her involvement with Oakland Natives Gives Back (ONGB). Tameka also took a moment to clear the air on some other topics as well.
Q: Please tell me about your non-profit organizations.
A: My personal non-profit is called ‘The Lost Ones’. It’s geared toward young women between the ages of 12-18 years old that are at risk of low scholastic achievement, pregnancy, drug use, delinquency, truancy, violence and other unproductive behaviors. It works in partnership with my other charity Oakland Natives Gives Back (ONGB).
Q: Explain what ONGB is about?
A: It’s an organization that was founded by me, Delicia Abdur-Rahim and Nyeisha Dewitt. Our goal is for people to give back to their native communities wherever their from. We supply children in under served communities with backpacks, school supplies and fun events. This is our 2nd year doing this and we have a rally on Aug. 23rd, at City Hall in Oakland Ca.
Q: Impressive, tell me more about the rally at City Hall.
A: The rally is an all day event for the kids where we’ll have day programs, motivational speeches, celebrity guests and at the end a backpack giveaway filled with school supplies and snacks. Last year we gave away around 800 backpacks and this year we’ll be handing out about 2,000.
Q: You seem to do a lot of work with underprivileged kids in Atlanta and Oakland, why is this such an important mission for you?
A: The idea of giving back to others excites me, I have been utterly blessed in every aspect, no matter where you are in life, you should never forget from where you came. It’s the least I could to give thanks for my many blessings.
Q: Sorry to change the topic, but there is a strong rumor that you threatened violence against a specific Atlanta based blogger due to she was stating multiple unconfirmed details regarding your divorce. Would you like to address this?
A: The rumor is actually quite boring, juvenile, yet hilarious. Ironically, I never knew of her or her blog until an associate alerted me about her and her erroneous remarks. I think the case with SO many bloggers is that there are good ones and there are those that are negative. When did they become a credible source on my life? I believe some of their blogs are actually erected to fulfill a certain void or insecurity within the writer. Deplorably, most don’t bother to “fact” check, they just sensationalize, repeat rumors or make them up in hopes of more hits and the possibilities from potential advertisers, I’ve learned. Those with malicious agendas don’t want the truth anyway. However, for the record- Be clear, I don’t do very much anonymously nor do I make threats, I’m a grown woman and there’s no need for me to make silly threats. Especially to the likes of disgruntled “Mean Girl” types hiding behind keyboards. Goodness, where do they find the time? In other words I did NOT threaten this Atlanta based blogger.
Q: Being in the spotlight is never easy. And the paparazzi have definitely gone after you regarding your high profile relationship. In one incident, I recall an unflattering picture from a photo shoot that circulated the blogs for quite some time. This one picture lead many people to believe that you developed a complex about your personal appearance and sought cosmetic surgery in Brazil because of that. Is this true?
A: Yes, there is an unauthorized altered photo that was taken with the intent of being a head shot (ie; to be cropped at the chest), it was not styled at all and shot at the end of a shoot. Unfortunately, it got into the wrong hands and a little Photoshop work is done and ‘voila’ you have a bad and funny shot of someone’s wife. A real knee-slapper. As far as my experience in Brazil, I NEVER had any cosmetic surgery done at all. I was to undergo a standard 30-40 min procedure and I had an adverse reaction to the anesthesia, nothing was ever started or happened. Never was there a planned ‘tummy tuck’ as reported. I have had nothing done aside from being birthed from parents blessed with awesome health and good genetics. I love me/ my body yet for a brief moment I got a little caught up in the Worldly perception of beauty and made an impromptu, unwise decision that I learned a valuable lesson from, I was only two months post delivery. I thank God for all that he has blessed me with. There are no complexes, no shortcuts and to stay focused is the answer.
Q: So, you never went into cardiac arrest as stated by the media outlets?
A: Yes I did, but it was due to an adverse reaction to the anesthesia.
Q: There are also reports that Usher requested a DNA test to see if he is the biological father of your 7-month old son Naviyd. Is this true?
A: It’s insane. I think the pseudo-DNA Request first ran in the National Enquirer, somewhere between them purporting lewd things about Michelle Obama and underneath the headline that we had captured Osama Bin Laden lol. Many bloggers like the afore mentioned Atlanta woman continue to circulate these fraudulent news pieces, so it’s like I don’t even need to discredit them because they discredit themselves. My husband even found it appalling. He was present for the births of both children and would never deny them. We both find it rude and absurd.
Q: Do you still love your husband?
A: There is a quote I have always loved from author Franklin P. Jones! ”Love doesn’t make the world go ’round. Love is what makes the ride worthwhile.”
Q: With stories and rumors emerging every other day, how are you coping being under the public eye?
A: The media, as well as public scrutiny can be a beast but I have learned it is best to ignore it and I have ignored it for over two years now. Some of the love, hate, pure ignorance, attention and multiple keystrokes that are devoted to me is actually flattering as opposed to hurtful. To garner such a devotion of energy be it positive or even the not so positive tells me I’m obviously well received and rarely go unnoticed. Its all love no matter how you slice it.
Needless to say I’m grateful for Tameka taking time out of her busy schedule and talking with me about The Lost Ones & Oakland Natives Gives Back.
For more information on how you can be apart and contribute to Lost Ones and Oakland Natives Gives Back go to http://www.oaklandnatives.com
(Please Note: I am NOT affiliated with any bloggers and do not give consent for my name or article to be distorted, or utilized to defame my creditability as a journalist or to harm the person I interview. Any person found guilty of doing so will be prosecuted to the full extent of the law.)
LaShonda Matlock is a freelance Entertainment Reporter and can currently be heard on Chicago Radio show Hollywood 360 on WIND 560AM, and a contributing Entertainment Reporter for NBC Chicago Street Team. For more gossip and news: http://twitter.com/GossipChicago
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Tags: Delicia Abdur-Rahim, Nyeisha Dewitt, Oakland Natives Gives Back, ONGB, Robert Ector, Tameka Foster Raymond, The Lost Ones, Usher