IU felt like a bubble to Jake Brodie, director of marketing for Lights on the Lawn Indiana, where the city outside the University felt foreign.
He only learned through his travels that many people live in poverty around the world.
Lights on the Lawn is a national nonprofit concert raising money for local charities. The Indiana chapter raises money for the Boys and Girls Club of Bloomington, which supports children through after-school programs. The concert is 7 to 11 p.m. Oct. 11 at Century Village. Tickets are $35.
“I feel like I’ve been privileged to be raised in a world, or obviously my community, where I don’t have to worry about stuff like that,” Brodie said.
Brodie said he wanted to give back to the community and help expand Lights on the Lawn to Indiana.
“It’s very important to remember we’re all humans,” Brodie said.
Senior Ryan Sterne, co-chairman for Lights on the Lawn Indiana, said he originally didn’t know where the funds should go from the Bloomington concert, so he went to the city and they pointed him to the Boys and Girls Club of Bloomington. He said the amount of poverty in Bloomington surprised him.
“None of us even know what’s going on in our backyard,” Sterne said.
According to the 2010 United States Census, Bloomington has some of the highest poverty rates in the nation. About 40 percent of Bloomington is living in poverty.
Sterne said the national Lights on the Lawn started in 2012 at Vanderbilt University. It first raised money for a student to get a rehabilitation machine to help him walk after a boating accident.
“They had so much support from the local community they decided to make it an annual event,” Sterne said.
After the funds for the machine were raised, Lights on the Lawn Vanderbilt began to raise funds for the Mary Parrish Center, which helps victims of sexual and physical violence, Sterne said.
Junior Austin Hanan, co-chairman for Lights on the Lawn Indiana, said he wanted the donations to go to the Boys and Girls Club of Bloomington because of its philanthropic work helping children with their schoolwork and providing after-school services.
“We thought there was no better way to bridge that gap than by supporting them,” Hanan said.
The demographic of IU helped jump-start the organization, Hanan said.
“Students here love concerts,” Hanan said.
Hanan said the pairing of a concert and charity was a way to get students involved, have fun and raise money for a local charity.
“Why not kill two birds with one stone and create a philanthropy aspect?” Hanan said.
Students should know how much their ticket price affects the charity itself, and the ways this concert is helping the community, Brodie said. The membership for the club costs $20 at the Lincoln Street Unit.One ticket for $35 covers about two kids’ memberships for a full year.
Brodie said one of his motivations for the charity is the sense of satisfaction he gets from helping children in need and giving them recreational fun.
“There’s nothing better than seeing a small child smile,” Brodie said.
Sterne said the goal is to better the relationship between the school and the city, while also helping people in need.
“Something we’re really looking forward to is the ability to connect the bridge between the student body and the community,” Sterne said.
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