Local artists perform to raise money for refugees

Amanda Crawford (left) and Robert Tobias (right) of the band Former Friends of Young Americans perform at the “Bands for Refugees” on Saturday at Tidball’s. Local bands played at Tidball’s to show support for refugees, with all profits going toward the International Center of Kentucky.

Kalee Chism

Last weekend, local artists and musicians came together to raise awareness and funds for refugees. Bands for Refugees was held at local music venue, Tidball’s, on Saturday, donating all proceeds to the International Center for Kentucky.

The performances included the Wet Eyed Liars, The Black Shades, and Former Friends of Young Americans (FFOYA), as well an art raffle,  including works by artists Danielle Patton of Bird and Bone Jewelry and Meranda Caswell of Scraps n Scratches.

Melissa Cary, the event’s coordinator, said the political attitudes toward refugees and immigrants is what brought her to creating the fundraiser.

“The current political climate in the United States had myself and my close friends feeling almost lost as to what we could do to help,” Cary said. “With the proposal of the border wall and the attempts at banning immigrants, including refugees, I wanted to do something. One of my oldest and best friends comes from a family of Cambodian immigrants,  so this is something close to my heart. Helping out the International Center of Kentucky is one way myself and the art community can contribute something positive.”

Cary said, the musicians were so willing to work for the cause that making the lineup was one of the most exciting parts of creating the event.

“The most exciting part was the willingness from all the bands, artists  and the venue. It was really easy to put together,” Cary said. “The most difficult part was telling other bands that the lineup was already set.”

Cary said that this event will open people’s minds to immigrants and refugees, refuting the stereotypes and encourage inclusiveness.

Tidball’s and the artists and musicians involved were the key roles that made this event happen., Cary said.

“I would like to give a huge thank you to John Tidball and the rest of the Tidball’s crew for giving the space to hold such an event,” Cary said. “And of course a very special thank you to the members of FFOYA, The Black Shades, and Wet Eyed Liars and the numerous local artists and artisans for donating their work to the raffle. Without any of them none of this would have been possible.”

All of the proceeds benefited the International Center of Kentucky, and Cary said she hopes to continue this event in the future.

“I would love to continue this as an annual event,” Cary said.

The main goal was to raise enough money to help impact the Center, and the event did just that.

“The main goal was to raise money for the Center, which was achieved by raising $600 from the cover charge at Tidball’s and the art raffle featuring donations from local artists and artisans,” Cary said.

 Reporter Kalee Chism can be reached at 270-745-2655 and [email protected]