The Weeknd donates $500,000 to COVID-19 relief efforts in Scarborough

The Canadian R&B star raised money from selling XO-branded face masks.

The Canadian R&B star raised money from selling XO-branded face masks

'I was raised in Scarborough and felt it was important to give back to the community,' the Weeknd said, of his recent donation. (Getty Images)

Canadian R&B star the Weeknd has donated $500,000 to the Scarborough Health Network (SHN) to support COVID-19 relief efforts. The donation comes from sales of XO-branded face masks he was selling online, with the singer matching every dollar raised. 

The Weeknd, who grew up in Scarborough, says in a press release that it was "important to give back to the community that raised me during the hard times of this pandemic." 

The SHN's COVID-19 Emergency Fund was created when the pandemic started to support frontline staff and doctors, helping deliver equipment such as ventilators, ICU beds, vital signs and ECG monitors in addition to personal protective equipment. The fund has now received more than $2.7 million from more than 3,500 donors. 

"Our vibrant and diverse community represents the best of Canada, and we are fortunate to have ambassadors like the Weeknd in our corner," SHN president and CEO Elizabeth Buller said in the same press release. "This gift will help our community hospitals continue to deliver exceptional care for the people of Scarborough in the wake of COVID-19, and demonstrates to our courageous staff and physicians that their critical work does not go unnoticed or unappreciated."