By: Paul Critzman III Columbia band 76 and Sunny is no stranger to playing nonprofit benefit concerts. Lead vocalist and guitarist Austin Lang says they play at least one or two a month.
"It’s important to us to keep doing that because it’s what we’ve always done since the beginning,” he said.
The band played at The Tin Roof Thursday night for Clothed In Hope’s annual Amplify Hope benefit concert. Clothed In Hope teaches women in Zambia how to sew, and then how to manage a small business so they can make money from their new trade. Former USC student Amy Bardi started the group three years ago and has been working in Zambia for the past year and a half.
Clothed In Hope's Christiana Purves said being in Africa is one of the reason's this year’s concert is extra special for them.
"We just graduated our first class of women through clothed in hope, and they’re now able to own their own business, send their kids to school, provide for their family, which is something that the women in the Ng’ombe compound of Lusaka, Zambia, haven’t been able to do before,” she said.
The money from the benefit concert all goes to maintain the first compound. Staff members collected donations at the door and sold various items at tables, including bracelets made by Zambian women.
Concert goer Joshua Story said he had a good time and couldn’t resist donating to the cause.
“I’d like to help them, so any time I can give money and get a nice shirt in exchange, I go ahead for it," he said.
Clothed In Hope raised $900 for the night, and while the organization is still young and creating a strong foothold with its first compound, staff members said they cannot wait to do more in the future.
Members of 76 and Sunny are about to graduate and said they’ll continue to play these types of gigs while hopefully becoming a better band.