MAMARONECK, N.Y. --The image of three-year-old Alan Kurdi on the shores of a Turkish beach last September led a group of Mamaroneck High School (MHS) students to take action.
The Refugee Project, a student-run club of 15 spanning grades nine to 12, was founded in the fall specifically to raise awareness of the Syrian refugee crisis and to raise funds to assist them. And now, in the group's first benefit "Song for Syria" concert, to be held Thursday, June 9, they're hoping to send money overseas. Their goal? $15,000.
According to Chloe Malushaga, the president of the club, auditions were held at MHS in March and 18 acts were chosen. The performances are a mix of rock, jazz, and alternative music as well as a couple of classical performances. Performers are current MHS students along with a few solo artists and alumni.
A couple of poets will also be highlighted. Weather permitting, the concert will be held outdoors on the baseball field. Malushaga and her club members hope people will bring a blanket, some friends and have a picnic while they enjoy the music. Food will also be available. If it rains, the concert will move indoors to the McLain Auditorium.
People can support the cause by making a tax-deductible donation of $10 or more on the group's fundraising page at http://diy.rescue.org/songforsyria .
Malushaga said she and her fellow students chose Syria because it's the most pressing refugee crisis since World War II. "Song for Syria will raise funds to help house, feed, and clothe the more than four million refugees displaced by Syria’s violent civil war," she explained. "Over half of these refugees are children."
The club is fundraising through the International Rescue Committee which is an approved charity for matching gifts at many corporations. Tickets for the performance, which starts at 6:30 p.m., are $8 for adults, $5 for students.