Demi Lovato got this tattoo of Africa on the inside of her right elbow to commemorate a trip that she went on to Kenya.
She takes her sobriety seriously, but also wanted to do something big for her twenty-first birthday. Rather than throwing a party she went on a volunteer trip to the Maasai Mara Region of Kenya with the charity WE (formerly known as Free The Children) and helped to build a school. “Birthdays are all about celebrating life and people are very blessed to even make it to 21. So the last thing I think anyone should be doing on their birthday is poisoning themselves,” she said. “I am just going to do a bunch of charity stuff and I feel like the best way to celebrate anyone’s birthday is just giving back and helping others.”
Not only did Demi’s trip help the local community, but she got a lot out of the experience herself. She tweeted “This trip has been such an amazing experience. Yesterday was the best birthday of my entire life!!!” The August 2013 trip was so impactful that she decided to create a permanent reminder with this tattoo, revealed in December 2013. She chose the shape of the the continent of Africa rather than the country of Kenya so that it would be more recognizable.
“I went [to Africa] for my 21st birthday. I went to Kenya and it was just a very, very inspirational journey that I feel like really had a huge impact on my life,” she told iHeartRadio. “And, I would’ve gotten Kenya but then people would have been like, ‘What’s that?’ So Africa’s a little more distinct.”