Hudson -- More than a month after Hurricane Sandy slammed into the east coast and brought damaging winds and torrential rains which carved a path of destruction reaching as far inland as Ohio, hundreds are still without power, homes or the hope of a happy holiday.
A group of Hudson High School students and teachers have joined with the Hudson Music Association members and are hoping their Dec. 18 benefit concert and silent auction will help make a dent in what is still needed in the storm-devastated areas.
The Music Association's benefit concert will be Dec. 18 at 7 p.m. in the high school auditorium. There will be performances by the orchestra and band.
The fundraiser has been dubbed Donations Offering Victims Escape from Sandy, or DOVES.
Tickets are $10 at the door, and pre-sale tickets are $8 to Hudson High School students when purchased during lunch hours.
The goal is to raise $1,500 for Hurricane Sandy victims, according to Margaret Jia, a 15-year-old sophomore who helped organized the event.
"I've registered our fundraiser with Direct Relief International," Margaret said.
"We will directly donate our funds, which are just monetary, to the organization, which distributes over 99 percent of its collected funds to people especially hit by natural disasters," she said. "Their main recipient is currently the victims of Hurricane Sandy."
Margaret found the organization under a list of those helping collect funds for the hurricane relief effort, she said. Margaret has been working with three friends at school to help put the fundraiser together.
Margaret and her friends approached Amy Foulkes, the high school choir and drama director at the school, for direction and assistance. Foulkes will be featured during the concert.
"I felt that it was a tremendous undertaking for the students and I wanted to support them in any way I could to host a positive, benevolent activity," Foulkes said.
The concert will feature Foulkes, high school music teacher Roberto Iriarte, a variety of students and "some guests we've invited from other schools and music groups" in solo and ensemble performances, Margaret said.
The Music Association will also have a silent auction beginning Dec. 17, and running the whole week in the high school media center.
"Items have been donated from students and staff, as well as some local businesses downtown," Margaret said.
The auction is during school hours and is only open to high school students and staff members.
Hurricane Sandy is not Margaret's first time helping others less fortunate. She has been helping to sew quilts at the Viking Sewing Gallery inside Jo-Ann Fabrics for more than a year.
"These quilts go to people who have been affected by natural disasters, so I've been aware of the destruction that victims face," Margaret said. "Here in Hudson, we all have warm homes to stay in for the holiday season, and all the devastation that the Sandy victims went through damaged their homes and changed how they are living now."
Margaret hopes her hobby will also help those in need. Margaret has been working with members of the high school knitting and sewing clubs to donate hats and quilts to Hurricane Sandy victims.
"Viking Mission Quilts has promised that the hats that the knitting club will knit, and the quilt tops the sewing club will sew, will be shipped to Sandy victims," Margaret said.
Foulkes is impressed with Margaret and others involved in the fundraiser.
"I am proud when our community embraces a drive to help others with unconditional love," she said. "I think the Hudson community has many generous, giving citizens who have, and will continue to help others with less."
Margaret invites the community to the concert to help hurricane victims find a warm home for the holidays.
"I hope we bring hope to victims and let them know that they're not alone, and that people care about them," she said.