In a video highlighting the importance of preventing domestic abuse, the little boy tells Johnson that since countless men look up to him, his involvement in the movement could have a profound impact.
Editor's note: This article was originally published on December 1, 2020. It has since been updated.
Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson helped a 5-year-old Kiwi-Samoan boy spread an important message during the 2020 holiday season. Young Angelou Brown from Christchurch, New Zealand reached out to the Fast & Furious star, asking a favor from the "strongest man on the planet" to help spread awareness about violence against women; an issue that had a deep impact on his loved ones and plagues innumerable families and communities across the world even today. In a video highlighting the importance of preventing domestic abuse against women, the little boy tells the father of three that since countless men look up to him, his involvement in the movement could help the troubled ones among them turn a corner.
"Dear Mr. Rock, my name is Angelou Brown and I am 5-years-old. I live in Christchurch, New Zealand," the youngster introduces himself in the powerful video. "My dad is Samoan so I'm pretty sure you're his cousin. And since you're part of the aiga (family), I thought I'd send you a gift. It's a T-shirt. Not just any T-shirt. This T-shirt my dad and my uncles wear to encourage other men to treat girls well. Men all around New Zealand, the Pacific, and even the whole wide world because his mum, my nana, had a sad life when they were growing up with lots of fights at home."
"It was sad for my dad to watch her get hurt a lot. And she had to go away lots to many refuges," Angelou continues. "My dad says it's his mission to help other men to heal so their wives don't have sad lives like Nana did." The youngster then reveals that his Nana is currently battling lung cancer and that his father Matt Brown — who established the group, She Is Not Your Rehab, to empower men in addressing their domestic violence issues so as to keep families and women safe — is determined to use the movement to help tell her story and keep her message alive.
"She always tells us that God can make sad things good. This is what these t-shirts are because I think you're the strongest man on the planet that many men look up to," Angelou says in the video. "If you wear this T-shirt then I think they will listen to you and we can help houses everywhere be violence-free. I hope it gets to you even if you live on an island far away. From our aiga to yours, we send you our alofa. Love Angelou."
Not long after the video was posted to the She Is Not Your Rehab page, Johnson reshared the video to his personal Instagram account. "Just watched and this one just sat me down," he wrote. "A bit emotional watching this 5yr old little boy speak to me." The 48-year-old also penned a heartfelt response to Angelou's video message, writing: "Angelou, It’s Uncle Rock. Yes, I’m you’re 'uncle' because of course, all us Samoans are related. I’m very proud of you, son. You don’t understand yet, because you’re too young but just know how courageous and inspiring you are to myself and our AIGA, but now - to the world."
"I admire your father, greatly for standing up and creating She Is Not Your Rehab. And to make sure his mom - your Nana - will never be forgotten. Encouraging men all over the world to treat our women with respect, love, and most importantly, violence-free," Johnson continued. "The way you sit in your Nana’s arms as she speaks to you is the exact same way I would sit in my grandma’s arms when I was your age, while [she] said her prayers in Samoan to God, and then she’d talk to me afterward just like she talks to you. She would tell me the exact same things your Nana is telling you. Listen to her. And always remember her words."
"You stay strong, Angelou, and keep listening to your Nana and your parents. One day you will become the leader of your aiga and also a leader the world will admire. All our alofa, Uncle Rock and our aiga," the star signed off. Johnson ended his message by promising the boy that his office will reach out to his family, so stay tuned for more on what's sure to be an incredible partnership.