Friday, December 30, 2016

Student Organized Concert Benefits Homeless

Blogger's Note: The following was provided by The Hill School.

Student Pottstown CARES leaders from The Hill School, Pottstown School District, and Montgomery County Community College have organized a family-friendly hip hop and pop music concert that will provide financial assistance to Your Way Home of Montgomery County, an organization that establishes emergency shelter and long-term stability for the homeless.

The concert will occur on Saturday, Jan. 14 from 7:30 to 10 p.m. in The Hill School Center For The Arts (CFTA) at 780 Beech Street. Free parking will be available in the parking lot there.

This inspirational student-driven event will feature two regional professional bands, The Rather Be Band and the Pottstown Music Collaborative, as well as The Gentlemen, Pottstown High School’s jazz ensemble, and the Hilltones and Hilltrebles, the Hill School’s select a cappella vocal groups.

The Rather Be Band is billed as a “huge sound in a small format.” The Pottstown Music Collaborative “is a developing, dynamic band of musicians from the Pottstown community, all focused on bringing people together through the power of sound,” said Bill Robertson, a Collaborative founder.

Tickets are $12 at the door, or they may be purchased for a reduced amount at Eventbrite

All ticket proceeds will benefit Your Way Home Montgomery County

In addition, Beverly's Pastry Shop, Pottstown, will provide cookies and cupcakes, and the The Butcher and the BBQ, also of Pottstown, will provide delicious boneless chicken wings. Both Beverly’s and the Butcher and the BBQ will generously donate half of all proceeds to Your Way Home Montgomery County.

Sodexo, The Hill School’s food service provider, also will donate beverages for the event.

Here's a video explaining the show and who benefits:

Anya Gupta, a member of Hill’s Class of 2018 and the primary student leader for this event, said the CARES students selected Your Way Home Montgomery County (YWH) as the beneficiary of this community endeavor because they wanted to make a tangible impact on our shared hometown. 

Anya explained that this organization – which partners with the Pottstown Cluster of Religious Communities – works to help homeless people find permanent housing and attain skills and resources that will help them maintain and improve their self-sufficiency.

“The Pottstown CARES students are so passionate about making a tangible difference in our community,” Anya said. “We want to show our compassion for those people who are struggling yet want to make their home here in the Pottstown area.

“With great appreciation for the band members and student performers who are donating their time and talent, we are keeping the concert ticket price low so that as many Pottstown area families can attend as possible,” Anya continued. “By attending this community-wide event, guests will enjoy some fantastic music and great locally created food. Even more importantly, attendees will show their support and dedication to improving our community.”

Kristen Fisher, community relations manager for Your Way Home Montgomery County, said that “the passion and dedication Anya and Pottstown CARES has for this work and ending homelessness is astonishing.”

“It is this type of commitment by community members that is so impactful in creating change,” Fisher added. “Your Way Home Montgomery County is honored to be a part of such a wonderful community event.”

Individuals also may donate directly to this wonderful cause through Your Way Home Montgomery County's donation page.

The initial, joint CARES (Community, Awareness, Responsibility, Empowerment, and Sustainability) endeavor was conceived in the spring of 2013 during conversations between Borough Manager Mark Flanders, then-Pottstown School Superintendent Dr. Jeff Sparagana, and Hill School Headmaster Zachary Lehman. 

The three leaders envisioned a collaborative project that would “spruce up” a designated area in the core of Pottstown while boosting community pride. 

In 2014, Montgomery County Community College’s West Campus joined the CARES planning team, and Lowes and the Tri-County Chamber of Commerce joined the group in 2016. 

Since its creation, Pottstown CARES has conducted numerous fall and spring neighborhood improvement projects, including a spring 2016 joint endeavor with Habitat for Humanity.

Over the past year, a new student leadership team comprised of students from The Hill, Pottstown School District, and Montgomery County Community College has been imagining and implementing additional projects to improve Pottstown. 

In addition to the Welcome Home benefit concert, CARES students recently initiated a Shop TriCounty initiative to encourage patronage of local businesses.

Learn more about Pottstown CARES and the student leaders by watching this short video, winner of the Best Documentary category in the 2016 Pottstown In Focus Film Festival.

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