Prince Jackson explains his personal connection to foster youths

Michael Jackson's eldest opens up about giving back.

ByABC News
April 27, 2017, 4:02 AM

— -- Prince Jackson is giving back, helping those who have aged out of the foster care system.

Michael Jackson's eldest child recently teamed up with a philanthropic group, a Sense of Home, to furnish the home of an aged-out foster youth who is the mother of two.

In an exclusive interview with ABC News, Jackson explained why this project was especially meaningful to him.

"When my dad died, the thought of being in the foster system crossed my mind, but I was fortunate to have an incredible grandmother and cousin, TJ, to fall back on," he said. "It became a passion of mine for a few reasons: One is because we provide a home for kids and a home is very instrumental in the growth of a child. Secondly, because we are trying to end homelessness and this acts as a pre-empt against it."

Jackson, 20, is a student at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles, where he co-founded the charitable student organization Heal Los Angeles, dedicated to helping eradicate child abuse, homelessness and hunger. Last month he appeared on "Good Morning America," and said Heal Los Angeles recently partnered with a Sense of Home to help former foster children "because it's very hard to get on your feet once you've gotten out of the system." Helping the young mother was an emotional experience, he said.

"For me, personally, I was honored that I had the fortune to be able to work with a Sense of Home and all of their volunteers. I was proud that we had finished this project for Heal Los Angeles and had built a home for a women and her children," he said. "Most importantly, I was happy because I could see her happiness when we finished the apartment."

He credits the King of Pop, who died in 2009, with instilling in him the importance of giving back.

"Helping others is important to me because it was important to my dad," Prince Jackson said. "He taught me and showed me that we cannot get anywhere in this life — professionally, physically, mentally, emotionally — without helping each other out."