Doing Their Part
Not everyone’s contribution can be boxed up and delivered to those in need. Some, like local singer/songwriter Monica Rizzio donated their talents to strike emotional chords within the Cape community to heal spirits during these strange times. Rizzio however wanted to make an impact that would matter long after her last note resonated with the loyal fans she has collected around the globe. “I just wanted to contribute,” Rizzio explains. “I first had the idea to do a fund raising performance for the Cape Cod Gig Relief Fund, a fund that we founded to support musicians, music teachers and concert production professionals on Cape Cod who were affected by lost gig wages until we can get back to live shows. I had a full tour scheduled; we were heading to Montana as a family for a full schedule of shows. So not only am I at home, but so are all of the musicians, crew and club owners. The ripple effects are massive.” Rizzio’s non-profit Vinegrass is a music and event production company that in more ordinary times would be energetically focused on producing music and festivals that could be enjoyed by the masses. Now her efforts have become far more solitary but still community-focused.
Rizzio, an early adopter of the online streaming concert model where she performs her captivating music, creates a version of what one of her shows would feel like, on Facebook. The “audience” is able to make donations in exchange for the live performance and the proceeds go to a good cause. Rizzio expanded her sphere of influence to also benefit the Cape Cod Arts Foundation, Cape Cod Healthcare and Wellfleet Preservation Hall, raising tens of thousands of dollars for those that have been significantly impacted by the effects of the virus.
Across the globe, the country and Cape Cod, individuals are doing what they can to help people they will likely never meet, and disconnected individuals are finding themselves part of communities they would never have imagined. Brian Golden, the SencorpWhite VP, has found himself a member of a group no one wants to join. Golden tested positive for COVID-19 in early May. He is quarantined at home, feeling pretty miserable, but pushing forward, and he was surprised to find the greatest source of knowledge, advice and support came from Joanne Geake from the Sandwich Department of Health. He says, “I would never have imagined, a town official would give me the most guidance and help in a time like this, but I guess you never know where help will come from.” In the words of Mister Rogers, “Look for the helpers.”
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