Ryan Lewis might be known as “that guy that stands next to Macklemore,” but the producer who is now a Grammy-winner along with his friend, is beginning to make a name for himself. Though the legacy he is trying to start might not be completely music related, it is related to something that is close to Lewis; a charity to help raise money to build health centers around the world to benefit people living with HIV.
Lewis revealed on Tuesday through his website, the one he shares with Macklemore, that his mother, Julie Lewis, has been living with the deadly disease for 30 years. In honor of her survival, Lewis and his family have begun to raise money for a project called “The 30/30 Project.”
The video begins with Lewis outlining the last couple of years that led to his international success after “Thrift Shop” made him and Macklemore a household name. After the typical, often told success story, the video shifts to the untold, behind-the-scenes story no one has ever heard before.
That’s where he begins to tell the untold story of what helped motivate him and about the strongest woman he knows; his mother. The narration continues with Lewis’ two sisters, his mother and his father speaking about how lucky she was not to fall victim of the disease unlike those who sadly passed away. After giving birth to her oldest daughter, Lewis’ mother was given a blood transfusion that was HIV positive at a time that blood was not being tested beforehand. Though her two youngest children (Ryan’s other sister and himself) had a 25% chance of getting the disease, they were lucky as well.
The project’s final goal is to reach $100,000 for the first health care center in Malawi and for those wanting to donate, an IndieGoGo campaign has already been started in an attempt to help achieve Julie Lewis’ goal to help out big. As of now, the fundraiser has received over $30,000 with 29 days still to go.