If you would like to donate to the Haiti Relief Fund
LOS ANGELES, CA - Saturday, February 12, 2011, the First AME Church of Los Angeles in cooperation with Congresswoman Maxine Waters, Assemblyman Mike Davis and the California Legislative Black Caucus presented “Friends Helping Haiti,” a musical celebration and benefit concert supporting clean water projects in Haiti. Grammy® nominated artists Marvin Sapp (Best Traditional Gospel Album 2010, Here I Am), Kelly Price (Best Female R&B Vocal Performance 2010, “Tired”) and Eric Roberson (Best Urban/Alternative Performance 2010, “Still”) headlined the event which also featured special guests Ted Winn and Sheryl Lee Ralph. Pat Harvey, award-winning broadcast journalist and co-anchor of CBS2 served as the Mistress of Ceremonies. Trin-I-Tee 5:7, Damien Lawson, Eric Roberson, Avis Herrell, Lee England and Desiree Coleman-Jackson also performed.
The benefit concert celebrating the Grammy Awards on Sunday, February 13th was free to the public, and donations were encouraged.
“Marking the one year anniversary of the tragic earthquake that took so many lives and raised awareness of the terrible conditions in Haiti, we at FAME knew that we were called upon to do something to address the ongoing crisis, and help end the cycle of disease and death. Clean water was the project we selected, and we are very grateful to have so many talented people join us in this important cause,” said Rev. Dr. John J. Hunter, Senior Minister, First AME Church of Los Angeles.
“I was thrilled to be able to be a part of FAME’s benefit concert for Haiti and to draw further attention to this ongoing crisis,” said Kelly Price. The artists who participated want Haiti to know that their people are still in our hearts and in our prayers.”
First Lady Denise Hunter who has been an advocate for Haiti knew that FAME could not let the one-year anniversary of the devastating earthquake in Haiti pass by without making a special contribution to the efforts to rebuild Haiti and raise the living standards in the poorest country in the Western hemisphere. “The FAME family has long supported projects in Haiti, and in its time of greatest need, we are called upon to give our utmost, and fulfill our promise of being ‘First to Serve.’”
Working with likeminded groups and individuals, Pastor John and First Lady Denise Hunter conceived the plan for a benefit concert celebrating the 53rd Annual Grammy® Awards and bringing together a stellar line-up of talented artists and performers under the banner “Friends Helping Haiti”.
A glass of clean water – is a luxury beyond the grasp of most Haitians. And the consequences are terrible. Haiti has the highest infant death rate in North and South America, and the leading cause of infant illness and death is unclean water. More than one-half of all deaths in Haiti are caused by water-borne illnesses. Germs for hepatitis, cholera, typhoid, malaria and chronic diarrhea are regularly found in the water supply used for drinking and cooking. And since the earthquake, the cholera epidemic in Haiti has sickened 194,000 people and killed over 4,000.
U.S. Congresswoman Maxine Waters said, “More than four thousand people have already been infected with cholera, and there is a frightening potential for this disease to spread in Port-au-Prince, where more than a million people are living in tent camps for the displaced and thousands of others live in impoverished communities without access to clean water and basic sanitation. There is an urgent need for widespread distribution of potable water, public health education efforts, and expanded capacity to diagnose and treat the sick.”
FAME selected clean water projects and the organization International Action, part of the Clinton Global Initiative Haiti Action Network, as the concert beneficiary. International Action has been active in Haiti since 2006, bringing clean water to thousands in Port-au-Prince through their inexpensive, reliable and sustainable water chlorination system. Pastor John and First Lady Denise share International Action’s vision of a world where every child will attend school, enhance their talents, and live to participate positively in their community.
Learn about how FAME is supporting Haiti at WWW.FAMECHURCH.ORG/HAITI