By Stephanie Beach
Traverse City Record-Eagle
---- — Local musician David Chown wrote a love letter to Traverse City to thank the community and the musicians who helped with the “Jammin’ Down for David Chown” benefit.
Chown, a self-employed musician, has a catastrophic medical insurance plan for himself and his family, but there is no disability insurance. This left the family in a precarious financial situation when Chown had prostate surgery in August. The benefit raised approximately $15,000 to help Chown and his family with medical expenses and loss of income while he recovered.
“Thanks to our wonderful community of Traverse City, we can breathe easier now. We are able to pay our bills and have a cushion for the medical bills that continue to come in,” David wrote. “I wish I could hug you all. I am so grateful and plan to ‘pay it forward’ by helping to establish a nonprofit coalition to help musicians and artists (going) through similar potentially catastrophic events get some immediate financial assistance. We have a great group of musicians and artists in this community, and it takes people like you to complete the circle, to make what we do rewarding and complete.
“I am continuing to feel stronger every day and am humbled to feel so loved by the community. I feel blessed,” David wrote.
David added that anyone who would like to be kept up-to-date on his efforts to establish a coalition can email him, firstname.lastname@example.org, or contact him through Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/pages/David-Chowns-Lookout-Music-Productions/200021566745157.
Benzie Area Christian Neighbors’ Summer Match Challenge campaign was a huge success and came at a great time. BACN’s busiest time is usually August to November and volunteers will handle about 800 visits a month.
More than 280 donors gave $54,049.99 to match a $40,000 challenge by the John L. Mulvaney Foundation and the Art and Mary Schmuckal Family Foundation.
Funds from the drive will provide food, clothing, education and limited financial help to residents of Benzie and northern Manistee counties.
“We can’t thank our two challenging foundations enough,” said Gerri VanAntwerp, executive director. “The match feature is always a big incentive to donors. We enjoyed support from every age and from every corner of the community. As an example, in August we received a check for $16 from three kids ages 10 and under who created a summer rock shop in their cottage and directed proceeds here. It’s heartwarming to think they spent part of their summer vacation here thinking about others less fortunate.”
BACN is a non-denominational charity that provides food, clothing, furniture, household goods and financial assistance to families in need.. For details or volunteer opportunities, call 882-9544 or visit www.benziebacn.org.