What’s better than music and giving back to the community? Absolutely nothing. Students at Valparaiso High School were able to knock out two birds with one stone during the Annual Alliance of Students Against Poverty (ASAP) Benefit Concert on the evening of Thursday, June 9th. The event was held at Valpo Velvet.
ASAP is a Valparaiso High School student-run organization that was started in 2010 by former VHS student Peter Fink. The organization focuses on fundraising for several organizations at the global, national, and local level.
While ASAP is primarily a Valparaiso High School organization, several other schools in Northwest Indiana have taken inspiration and attempted to start clubs that address the same issue—poverty. The ASAP Benefit Concert was started in 2012 and has been a tradition ever since.
Francie Fink, President of the ASAP, stated, “I think the reason why people love coming every year is that it truly is a community event. Valparaiso is a community that loves music and giving back! High school students like performing, students like watching their peers, and parents like watching their kids.”
Last year, ASAP was able to raise over $3,500, and this year they were looking to beat it. All of the proceeds from the event go to Valparaiso’s Hilltop Neighborhood House. Hilltop helps low-income working parents and those in college by providing full time childcare. Hilltop additionally distributes several childcare scholarships and provides a safe learning environment for children through after school and summer programs.
Fink further elaborated, “If every person could see how grateful Hilltop House is for our donations every year, I think they would be extremely happy knowing that they are giving to a worthy cause.”
The ASAP Benefit Concert comprised of VHS students and graduates. Many of the students played together in band, orchestra, or choir at the high school, so the concert provided these same students a chance to play music that was a little less traditional.
From students rapping to guitar solos, the concert had something for everyone. The event allowed students to bond over their love of music while also shedding light and awareness on an important organization in our community.
Mary Cobble, former President of the ASAP, stated, “It is wonderful to see the tradition live on. I remember going to the ASAP Benefit Concert as a freshman and being completely inspired. It’s really important that VHS students set a good example for incoming students, and this is the perfect event to show the talent that thrives in our school.”
Leaving the event, I felt inspired. Nothing like witnessing talented young individuals make a difference through music and giving back.