Last Wednesday, the iconic ’90s rock act Pearl Jam began their brief U.S. run of “Home” and “Away” shows, which kicked off with a pair of performances in their native Seattle, WA, marking the band’s first shows in their home city in five years. Following Wednesday night’s performance at Safeco Field, for their second and final performance at the arena on Friday night, the group continued the trend of inviting out special guests and offering standout covers in addition to selections from their more traditional live catalog.
As promised, the band used the two “Home Shows” to raise money for the city’s homelessness. According to Seattle’s KOMO News, the band’s efforts raised over $11 million for the cause, with 90% of the proceeds going to King County organizations.
As frontman Eddie Vedder shared via the Pearl Jam Facebook page on Friday following Wednesday night’s success,
There’s a bit of magic that happened in a relatively short amount of time and that is that a coalition of volunteers and organizers, businesses and government. We all got together and got them together and they started having conversations and started elevating the discussion and the empathy became action and in a very short amount of time because they are incredibly good minded people and with your help supporting this endeavor we were able to raise eleven million dollars as a starting point to eradicate what is a complex issue. And it’s a complex issue.
In the video below, Pearl Jam’s Stone Gossard and Mike McCready talk with youth advocate Azia Ruff about what success looks like to them for #TheHomeShows initiative. You can be a part of solving this crisis. It’s going to take all of us. Click here for more information.
“This is what those ‘Home Shows’ can do,” explained Marty Hartman, director of Mary’s Place, to the 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, one of forty organizations that will receive donations from Pearl Jam, is a non-profit that provides temporary housing to homeless women, children, and families. They officially opened the doors to their first private shelter on Wednesday, with 219 beds, an expansive kitchen, a medical facility, special quarters for those with special needs, and space dedicated to children and teens.
“Up until now, we’ve been in buildings that are slated for demolition,” Hartman continued. “This is the first time we’ve ever bought anything. This is our first home purchase.”
In addition to Pearl Jam’s efforts, over 80 Seattle restaurants joined the campaign and donated a portion of their Wednesday sales to Pearl Jam’s Home Away fund.
“Businesses in Seattle want to do the right thing and I think this provides an opportunity to do so, to make a difference,” explained Sara Nelson, co-founder of Fremont Brewing.
In May, the City Council will have their debate on whether or not to tax some of the city’s biggest businesses in order to provide more affordable housing.
“A lot of businesses jumped on board because we do want to be part of the solution,” Nelson continued. “And I think that its great that this is coming in the wake of that big battle to show that we can come back together as a community.”
[via KOMO News]