Students sing for Syrian refugees

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Joseph Vaughan (left) and James Adair (right) photographed during their performance by fellow student Leanne Baker.

By Madeline Tang

Performers, friends, and families alike gathered at Notre Dame Catholic High School in Carleton Place on Thursday, October 22, 2015, to eat food, watch live music, and, most importantly, raise money to donate to relief efforts for the Syrian refugee crisis.

The event required a price of admission, as well as offering refreshments available for purchase. With that, and the crowd attracted from both within the school and without, the event raised a total of $864 to be donated.

On September 12, 2015, the government of Canada announced that, until December 31, 2015, they would match up to $100 million worth of donations to aid the Syrian refugee crisis, and the Notre Dame coffeehouse is just one example of the fundraisers that have been happening across the country since that announcement.

“It went better than I expected,” begins Erin Hubert, a grade 12 student at Notre Dame, and the primary organizer of the event, “I never thought that so many people would show up, and we even ran out of spots for people to sit!” She went on to express how proud she was with everyone who performed, including those who hadn’t signed up ahead of time and went up to her asking to perform. She concluded with, “That made me feel pretty great, because the atmosphere was just really comforting and everyone felt welcome.”

Notre Dame has an active musical community, and the coffeehouses are an intimate and friendly setting with which to showcase it. Performances ranged from a capella soloists, guitar and singing duos, pianists, and poets, with some impromptu additions from the audience to conclude the evening.

For more information, or to make a donation through the United Church of Canada that will be matched by the government, visit http://www.united-church.ca/communications/news/response/150911, or call 1-800-268-3781.