Pearl Jam Raises Millions for Seattle's Homeless With Two Shows
The band hadn’t played their hometown in five years.
Pearl Jam raised millions of dollars for Seattle’s homeless after playing two sold-out shows in their hometown, reported NME.
The seminal grunge-rock outfit revisited their old stomping grounds for the first time in five years with a pair of benefit concerts dubbed the Home Shows at the city’s Safeco Field and a day of volunteerism between the performances on Aug. 8 and 10, and will reportedly donate 90% of the $11 million proceeds to local organizations.
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"It was the simple fact that we all live here, and like anyone else who’s lived here for awhile — not to mention their whole lives, like some of us — we’ve seen the changes happening in our community," Stone Gossard, one of the band's guitarists, told Mashable in an email about what inspired the Home Shows. "You can’t not see the increasing numbers of people who need help."
The band, along with other members of the community, committed to matching donations (up to $960,000) to a new fundraising campaign called the Home Fund. Meanwhile, it also lured local companies, including Starbucks, Nordstrom, and the Seattle Mariners, to contribute to the effort, noted Mashable.
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“This is what those ‘Home Shows’ can do,” Marty Hartman, director of Mary’s Place, told KOMO NEWS. “Literally, bring more people home, out of those cars, out of those tents, up off the sidewalk and give them a safe space to be and get them into their forever home.
Mary’s Place is a nonprofit organization that provides temporary housing to women, children, and families in the homeless community.
The band’s philanthropic spirit also spilled over into area restaurants in Seattle, with more than 80 establishments donating a portion of proceeds from Wednesday evening to the band’s Home Fund.
According to the McKinsey Report, roughly 12,000 people are homeless on any given night in King County, which includes Seattle.
"I think folks were feeling like, 'Oh my gosh, there’s nothing that can be done,' but I feel this surge of this enthusiasm for these concerns," said Lauren McGowan, senior director for ending homelessness and poverty at United Way of King County, which is a key Home Shows partner, along with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the Schultz Family Foundation, according to Mashable. "It really has reunited our community and reinvigorated people."
"Art not only breaks down barriers, but can also be a means to heal the trauma that can be caused by experiencing homelessness,” - @MikeMcCreadyPJ.— Pearl Jam (@PearlJam) August 5, 2018
Learn more about the @PathWithArt x #PearlJam#TheHomeShows poster collaboration: https://t.co/bOBjg9T04qpic.twitter.com/jyo9hBxli4
Pearl Jam frontman Eddie Vedder will be a headliner at the Global Citizen Festival Mandela 100, in proud partnership with the Motsepe Foundation, on Dec. 2 in Johannesburg, South Africa. Learn more here.
Correction: An earlier version of this story included news reports that Pearl Jam will donate their proceeds to 40 organizations. The band has not yet officially announced beneficiaries or specific amounts.