Meryl Streep makes donations to Viola Davis' charities

LOS ANGELES ( - Meryl Streep paid tribute to Viola Davis this week, contributing $20,000 to two Rhode Island charities connected to “The Help” star.

The donations came after Streep bested Davis in the race for the Academy Award for Best Actress for her performance in “The Iron Lady.”

The Oscar winner wrote a check for $10,000 to Upward Bound to honor Davis, the program’s director Mariam Z. Boyajian confirmed to TheWrap.

Boyajian said it was the largest donation in the organization’s history.

“I was writing to her when you called,” Boyajian told TheWrap. “I wanted to give her a chance to settle down from the hectic weekend before I gave her the good news.”

Streep followed up that donation with a separate $10,000 check to Segue Institute for Learning, according to the Providence Journal.

Angelo Garcia, the school’s founder, did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Segue is a charter school based in Central Falls, R.I. -- the economically depressed community where Davis grew up.

Davis acknowledged the school while accepting a Best Actress award from the Screen Actors Guild earlier this year, telling the students “to dream big and dream fierce.”

A spokeswoman for Streep did not immediately return requests for comment. The checks reportedly came from Streep’s Silver Mountain Foundation for the Arts.

Boyajian said it is the second time Streep has donated to the program as a tribute to Davis. The previous gift came in 2009.

Streep and Davis were rivals at this year’s Oscars, but they appeared together in the 2008 film “Doubt.”

Upward Bound is a federally funded program that provides college preparatory classes and educational grants to high school students from low-income communities. Davis and her sister Dolores Davis Grant both attended the program, which is based at Rhode Island College, Boyajian said.