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A benefit concert in Sheridan is raising money for humanitarian efforts in Ukraine

Alpha Graphics & 3 Willow Design

A benefit concert that will be held at the WYO Theater will raise funds for humanitarian relief efforts for Ukrainians that have fled the county as well as those who remain inside its borders. This comes as Russia’s invasion of the country has lasted for nearly five months. At least eight million Ukrainians have fled their country while the war rages on, with many cities and villages having received heavy damage from the fighting.

While there may not seem like there are many similarities to some between Ukraine and Wyoming, the human connection has spurred many people to get involved.

“This fundraiser grew from my feelings of helplessness, regarding how to help the people of Ukraine,” said Bruce Andrews, a singer and musician who will perform and who organized the event. “As I talked about it with my family and friends, our conversation quickly grew into the idea of a community concert.”

Grassroots initiatives and local fundraising efforts have popped up throughout the country and around the world after Russia’s invasion. Andrews said that he doesn’t have a specific dollar amount in mind for donations and will let people make the decision of how much to donate.

“Undoubtedly, many of our community feel helpless in a similar way,” he continued. “We and the people of Ukraine are members of a larger community of humankind that this concert came to be for we are each other's keepers. Every person contacted in regard to this fundraiser donated their time and talent immediately, wholeheartedly, and without reservation. We are a community blessed with kindness and generosity.”

The Sheridan County YMCA is also accepting donations, which will take the funds raised at the WYO and send them overseas. Over $65,000 has already been donated for the cause, Andrews said.

A promotional poster for the event was created by local graphics artsbusinesses without charge. Local community leaders, media, and businesses have also played a part in spreading the word for the concert.

Tickets can be purchased on the WYO Theater’s website or the Sheridan County YMCA’s website. The event is set to begin at 7 p.m. on Thursday, Jun. 30.

Hugh Cook is Wyoming Public Radio's Northeast Reporter, based in Gillette. A fourth-generation Northeast Wyoming native, Hugh joined Wyoming Public Media in October 2021 after studying and working abroad and in Washington, D.C. for the late Senator Mike Enzi.
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