Miley Cyrus Beautifully Gives Up MTV VMA Speech to Homeless Man, Uses Celebrity's 'Big Image' for Good

( [email protected] ) Aug 26, 2014 01:51 PM EDT
Video Music Awards 2014 - Miley Cyrus
Miley Cyrus attends the 2014 VMA's with her date, a homeless man named Jesse. (Kevin Mazur/MTV1415/Getty Images)

After winning the Video of the Year for "Wrecking Ball" at the 2014 VMAs, Miley Cyrus surprisingly did not walk out on stage to accept her award, instead sent a homeless man to accept the trophy on her behalf. 

While Jimmy Fallon held the microphone, the young man named Jesse Helt, 22, explained how those watching could donate to My Friend's Place, a social service organization that helps homeless youth in Hollywood find shelter, healthcare, and education. 

"Though I may have been invisible to you in the streets, I have a lot of the same dreams that brought many of you here tonight," he said as Cyrus wept while watching in the audience.

On her Facebook page, Cyrus further explained:

"Help me raise awareness and funds to end youth homelessness! This is just the beginning for me, but we're going to get started now by focusing on My Friend's Place, a homeless center for young people in Hollywood.You can support the cause by making a donation! For every $5 donation, you'll be entered to win a trip for 2 to Brazil to hang out with me at my show in Rio de Janeiro on Sept 28th. You'll get the full VIP experience, including 2 of the best seats in the house."

Cyrus' act of goodwill is a far cry from last year's VMA performance, in which she shocked audiences by grinding on a married Robin Thicke and dancing provocatively in a skimpy outfit.

Her actions horrified many fans who viewed Cyrus as a positive role model for young girls due to her innocent performance as Hannah Montana on the hit Disney channel sitcom.  

But according to Cyrus, she is now changing her ways, attempting to once again use her celebrity for good.

"I just didn't realize my platform, I didn't realize my power," she said in an interview with Ryan Seacrest's KIIS FM radio show Monday. "And I think I really realized it after the VMAs [last year]...there's something special and there's only few people that experience this that no matter what I do, there's no winning or losing, it's just going to be talked about. Period."

"I'm going to be on the cover of everything no matter what, and I can't help it. There's going to be talk, so what do I want them to talk about?" she went on. "If I'm going to be given this loud of a voice and this big of an image and this big of a platform and this huge of an opportunity to talk to young people in America right now, what am I really trying to say? Because I don't think what I was trying to say is what happened the year before."

Within 24 hours, My Friend's Place raised over $200,000, an accomplishment that the organization's executive director, Heather Carmichael, said never happened before, according to ABC News. 

And fans once again hopeful, as Twitter instantly lit up with accolades for the starlet following the VMA's.

"I have gained so much respect for Miley," wrote one Twitter user. "After last year, I had written her off entirely. Praise God that she has matured in such an incredible way."