Supporters around the world are hosting parties in honor of pop singer Tori Amos' 38th birthday to raise money for the Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network's (RAINN) rape hot line.
Kaladi Brothers Coffee in Soldotna along with Mike Morgan, of World Music for the Kenai, and Sandra DuVall, local RAINN volunteer coordinator, will host a party at 7:30 p.m. Thursday with guest musicians Korby Lenker and Christopher Glass from Bellingham, Wash.
Soldotna's fund-raising event is one of 126 such parties to be held by hosts in 40 states and 12 countries around the world.
The parties, scheduled around Amos' Aug. 22 birthday, raise money for the country's only national rape hot line.
RAINN, a non-profit organization based in Washington, D.C., is the nation's largest anti-rape organization and was founded in 1994 by its president, Scott Berkowitz. Amos, herself a survivor of sexual assault, is a founding member, supporter and serves as the chair of RAINN's advisory board.
RAINN's national rape hot line (1-800-656-HOPE) provides free, confidential counseling 24 hours a day to anyone in the country. When someone calls the hot line 1-800 number, they are routed to the nearest available rape counseling center to receive immediate support. If someone were to call from the Kenai area, they would be forwarded to the Kenai-Soldotna Women's Resource and Crisis Center.
"I'm very happy getting people to know what it (RAINN) is and having the 800 number out there so people know there is someone to call and talk to," DuVall said.
According to its Web site, RAINN has helped more than 405,000 victims of sexual assault. As of March 1, 2001, RAINN has 869 rape crisis center affiliates across America. The hot line is supported entirely by donations; RAINN receives no government funds.
It takes $1,085 to keep the hot line operating for 12 hours, said DuVall. According to RAINN's Web site, more than 88 cents of every dollar raised for or donated to the organization goes to helping the victims of rape and sexual assault.
DuVall first became aware of the birthday party fund-raisers through an e-mail she received as a Tori Amos fan.
"It started with me and my interest in Tori Amos," DuVall said. "I got an e-mail about the fund-raiser, saying anyone that wanted to host a party could e-mail back."
From there DuVall approached Morgan, and they went to work setting up Thursday's concert. Musicians Lenker, a vocalist and songwriter who plays the guitar, mandolin, fiddle and penny whistle, and Glass, a vocalist and classically trained master of almost every stringed instrument there is, are members of The Barbed Wire Cutters, a bluegrass band renowned in the Pacific Northwest. Morgan and Kaladi Brothers are bringing them up from Bellingham specifically to do this concert.
The cover charge at Kaladi Brothers will be $10. That money will be used to pay the band and any funds left over will be donated to RAINN. DuVall will be at the concert collecting donations for RAINN and raffling off three promotional Tori Amos CDs that Atlantic Records issued for the benefit of RAINN. The CDs contain three songs from Tori Amos' current world tour.
DuVall has also been handing out pamphlets and collecting private donations.
"I'm trying to get about $5,000," DuVall said. "So far I've got a little over $1,000 collected from private donations -- people I know or that I've been calling or leaving pamphlets with. One of (the donations) was from as far as Germany."
Kaladi Brothers holds about 40 to 50 people, and DuVall hopes people will come and go or donate while they're there.
"I already consider it a success," DuVall said. "Anchorage held a party and they only raised $700. And they had something like five bands playing."
Regardless of how much money is raised Thursday, DuVall plans to host another party next year and continue fund raising.
"There are parties all over the world that are going on and that have been completed," DuVall said. "So it's been a very large, major event. Being a die-hard Tori fan I'm trying to get an interview with her for when she goes to Seattle to see what more we can do here to get it promoted."
For more information on RAINN or the concert or to make a donation, contact DuVall at 262-8350 or visit the Web site at www.rainn.org.
"I just want people to know that if they need help, it's out there," DuVall said. "And if they don't need help and want to donate, we're accepting. "
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