Bono (Paul Hewson)

by Victoria from San Diego




"As a rock star, I have two instincts, I want to have fun, and I want to change the world. I have a chance to do both" (Bono). This quote by Bono himself explains exactly what he does in his career ever since the band the band he is in, U2, has been put in the spotlight. Bono was born Paul David Hewson in Dublin, Ireland, on May 10, 1960. As a distraught teenager, Hewson joined a performance group called Lypton Village. As a part of the group's nickname-giving tradition, a member dubbed Hewson as "Bono Vox", which translates to "good voice" (Kamberg 7). Over time, Hewson shortened the name to "Bono", not knowing it would be the name that would be known by millions as the frontman of U2, the band formed on September 26, 1976, in a young Larry Mullen's kitchen (Kamberg 8). From that point forward, the group has only gotten progressively more well-known, eventually getting international recognition and giving Bono many opportunities to start organizations that contribute to the occlusion of famine and the impact of AIDs in Africa, while promoting the cause through his music. Bono has done much more than make music and pose to support campaigns, he utilized his fame by giving to others selflessly through creating and supporting charities in hopes to educate others while alleviating the effects of poverty, starvation, and AIDs in Africa. 










Bono is constantly finding ways to give to others. If he isn't starting a new organization, he is busy giving to or promoting another. For example, Bono had once traveled all the way to Cape Town to take part in a charity fundraiser hosted by Nelson Mandala, in hopes to raise awareness of the Global Threat HIV/AIDS poses (Trachtenberg 109). Bono's free performance was made purely for the benefit of others. Instead of taking a break from the tour life and relaxing at home, Bono chose to travel thousands of miles away to perform at the charity concert, which aims to raise Global Awareness on the impact of AIDs/HIVs. Along with helping promote others' charities and organizations, Bono has started plenty of his own, the biggest being Product RED, for which he "hopes that its profits from the venture will generate a 'sustainable' flow of money to support the Global Fund to Fight AIDs, TB, and Malaria (Weber)". The time and effort Bono puts into organizing a charity shows how he puts others before himself. This also shows generosity does not only come in the form of monetary worth, but also the valuable time and effort put into helping others. It would be easy for Bono to take advantage of his fame and use all of the publicity he gets for personal gain, but he instead insists on using his high popularity to help from attention to causes that he believes will bring positive change to the world. Bono's ongoing generosity and contribution are what makes him a role model and inspiration to others.










Bono has been a person of strong will and determination in both his childhood and career. At the age of ten, Bono's mother died, leaving the young boy depressed, not knowing what to do with his life or where he was headed. "Iris Hewson's (mother of Bono) death left her younger son devastated. Depressed, feeling alone, and realizing that he had no clear plans for the future, the teen cast about for something to give his life meaning and a sense of purpose. That he found it in music surprised everyone who knew him (Kamberg 6)." Bono was clouded in despair and hopelessness early in his life, but, knowing that every cloud has a silver lining, he looked for a purpose instead of giving up. Many people have gone through a similar situation as Bono was put in. When others know that Bono had been through losing an important person in his life and ended up making it and becoming successful, they know there is hope and that someone else had made it through a difficult time in their life. It gives those who look up to him motivation to make it through tough obstacles in life, and lets them know perseverance is all you need to reach your goals. This fortitude stuck with Bono throughout his life, as he later channeled his determination into his career. "U2 fans were getting into the act [his plan] too. They had been listening to Bono talking as well as [him] singing, and the U.S. Treasury Department received twenty thousand e-mails from them, urging action on debt relief. (Kamberg 92)." Bono had identified a situation that needed extra support, and gave it exactly what it needed. By spreading the word to his fans, Bono's goal, to bring debt relief to countries who couldn't afford to pay it off, was met. Bono has inspired others with his strong drive to meet his goals, showing his fans that hard work and determination are all one needs to meet his or her goals..






Ever since he was given the opportunity, Bono has taken every chance he could to inform others on and attenuate poverty, AIDs, and starvation in Africa. Becoming an international rock star has only acted as a gateway for Bono to take part in or start large organizations helping those in areas of Africa that are in need. To this very day, Bono continues to contribute charitably to numerous organizations, of which many he started on his own, in efforts to diminish poverty, starvation, and AIDs in Africa. His actions as not only a musician, but also a humanitarian, are what make him a hero to me. He uses his music along with the publicity he gets from his profession to help those in need, while having fun at the same time. The fact that he can help others while genuinely enjoying what he does as a career inspires me to go beyond just getting employed when I grow up, but to also work hard so I can get into a career that I enjoy and also provides to those who are in need


Page created on 6/15/2013 12:00:00 AM

Last edited 4/18/2024 5:18:07 AM

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Kamberg, Mary-Lane. Bono: Fighting World Hunger and Poverty. New York: Rosen Pub. Group, 2009.

Trachtenberg, Martha P. Bono: Rock Star Activist. Berkeley Heights: NJ: Enslow, 2008.

Weber, Tim. "Bono Bets on Red to Battle Aids." [Online] Available 2006.