The pictures and news footage coming out of Haiti are often hard to watch. The 7.0-magnitude earthquake that struck the island-nation on Jan. 12 killed an estimated 200,000 people, but many more have suffered and died in the following days due to insufficient medical personnel and equipment.
The situation is overwhelming for the doctors and nurses who’ve managed to make it into the area, but on Sunday, Jan. 31, the Clarksville community will get the opportunity to directly support medical teams working in the devastated region through Clarksville Responds: Haiti Relief Efforts for the Visitation Hospital Foundation, a city-wide concert and telethon.
Throughout the day, some of the area’s top bands and musicians will perform for the public at three locations – The First Church of the Nazarene on Warfield Boulevard, Einstein Bros. Bagels at the Austin Peay State University Morgan University Center and the Music/Mass Communication Building’s Concert Hall on the APSU campus.
Musical talent lined up for the event includes The Kansas City Blues Band, The Silver Eagle Band, Chuck Emery and Friends, Kimber Cleveland, Cumberland Connection, the Salem Ridge Quartet, Ted Jones, Stanley Yates, Tom Bark, The Beaglesand APSU President Tim Hall. Other groups and individuals have expressed interest in performing, and a complete listing of performers and times will be available soon online at www.apsu.edu.
Monetary donations will be accepted at all concert sites, and the performances will be broadcast live on Charter Cable Channel 99 and on 91.9 WAPX-FM radio. Viewers and listeners will be directed to call (931) 221-7329 to make donations during the event.
All the money raised during this telethon concert will go to support the Visitation Hospital Foundation, a Nashville-based non-profit formed in 1999 for the purpose of providing health care and empowering people to pursue their basic right to health care and health education. Many of the Foundation’s volunteers have come from the Clarksville community. In 2008, the Visitation Clinic and Campus officially opened about 40 miles west of Port-au-Prince. Since then, the clinic has been treating between 70 and 90 patients a day. That campus suffered no significant damage from the earthquake and is providing important relief space for the injured.
On Jan. 28 and Jan. 30, area residents will also have additional opportunities to support Visitation Hospital’s efforts in Haiti. Those nights have been designated as Hoops for Haiti at APSU, sponsored by the Clarksville Sunrise Rotary Club. Anyone who makes a monetary donation at the Dunn Center will receive admission to the double-header men’s and women’s APSU basketball games scheduled for either of those evenings.
Online donations can also be made on the organization’s Web site, www.visitationhospital.org. For more information on these events, please contact Pam Gray at or John Moseley at .