Annapolis teens use music to raise money for Ukraine

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The group was called “Young Hope Annapolis”, consisting of Jack, Mackenzie Priddy, Nate Finn, Cameron Mae and Sydney Smith. Along with a few special guests, they provided entertainment inside the Market House restaurant in downtown Annapolis.

Jack Shenk and Nate Finn pose for a photo outside of their fundraiser for Ukraine in downtown Annapolis. (WTOP/Valerie Bonk)

OMCP/Valerie Bonk

A singer from Young Hope Annapolis takes the microphone at the Market House. (WTOP/Valerie Bonk)

OMCP/Valerie Bonk

Those who donated at least $20 were able to spin a wheel to win prizes at the Young Hope Annapolis fundraiser. (WTOP/Valerie Bonk)

OMCP/Valerie Bonk

A singer from Young Hope Annapolis takes the microphone at the Market House. (WTOP/Valerie Bonk)

OMCP/Valerie Bonk

Music filled the streets of downtown Annapolis Saturday, but it wasn’t just for entertainment. This was to raise funds for Ukrainians in need.

“We wanted to find a way to help out,” said Jack Shenk, a 16-year-old sophomore at Broadneck High School.



Shenk said he participated in a live fundraiser hosted by his vocal coach about a month ago that raised $5,000 to support Ukraine. It was then that Jack and his friends were inspired to go further.

The teenagers held a five-hour concert in the heart of Annapolis to raise money for the humanitarian organization Project HOPE, which carries out relief operations in Ukraine.

The group was called “Young Hope Annapolis”, consisting of Jack, Mackenzie Priddy, Nate Finn, Cameron Mae and Sydney Smith. Along with a few special guests, they provided entertainment inside the Market House restaurant in downtown Annapolis.

The group also had outside speakers and streamed the event live on their Youtube channel.

“Everyone we spoke to was so excited about this idea and really wanted to help out,” Shenk said. “And we gave them a way to do it – and have fun at the same time.”

Shenk himself played guitar and sang songs by John Mayer and Tom Petty during the concert. Her mother, Kelly Shenk was there and said she was incredibly proud of the teenagers.

“Having kids who feel like they can change the world…We’re so inspired by them,” Kelly said.

Nate Finn, 16, also a sophomore at Broadneck High School, said he was grateful for the outpouring of support.

“Our goal is to give everyone in Ukraine hope, and really our generation and generations to come to say, ‘Hey. Anyone can do it,'” Finn said.

To reach their goal of $10,000, the group collected donations both at Market House and online.

“We wanted to find a way to help, even though we’re so far away,” Shenk said.

“I am inspired by young musicians in our community who want to do something after seeing the horrific images in Ukraine,” Mayor Gavin Buckley said in a statement. “It’s always inspiring to see the next generation getting involved, taking action and working to make the world a better place.”

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