By Katie Abdilla
DETROIT(WWJ)- Even at the age of 12, Troy resident Morgan Fisher was inspired to help feed and educate children in Africa. After meeting Peter Pretorius, the co-founder of nonprofit Joint Aid Management, or JAM, she took to the streets, a tin can in hand, eager to raise money for the cause herself.
“Once I heard his story, I was completely inspired,” Fisher said. “It’s hard to hear him speak and not do something.”
At 14, Fisher, who is now a sophomore studying communications at Oakland University, formed her own nonprofit, Bands That Jam 4 Africa. With the help of about 14 bands both local and national, Fisher has held 7 benefit concerts and raised over $100,000 for JAM, and has even visited Africa and met the children she’s helped.
On June 16, Fisher will host a benefit concert at 7 p.m. at The District in Lake Orion. The show will feature several music performances, including Minnesota band Swimming With Dolphins, Lancifer, Aaron Jennings and Metro Detroit bands Yours Truly and Rival Summers.
“Music is the language of the world,” Fisher said. “It’s something everyone can feel and relate to. It’s a good way to bring a diverse group of people together to expose them to a cause.”
Tickets to the event cost $10 at the door. The proceeds from the show will go directly to JAM, which feeds, educates and provides clean water for more than 550,000 children in five countries in Africa.
Ann Pretorius, a co-founder of JAM, said the funds raised help the organization give children in Africa a second chance at life with better opportunities.
“At JAM, our greatest passion is to see the transformation of children’s lives here in Africa as we bring them much-needed nutrition and the opportunity for an education which will change their destiny and opportunity in life,” she said. “We are very proud of Morgan, who from such an early age caught the vision and heartbeat of JAM.”
Leo Bautista of Rival Summers, who has known Fisher since high school, said performing for the cause has become a source of passion for him.
“It takes $50 to feed a child in Africa for an entire year,” he said. “A lot of people don’t realize it takes so little to do so much.”
In the end, Fisher said she hopes those attending the show will leave feeling inspired.
“I just want them to feel like they made an impact,” she said. “It feels good to connect with people across the world, and we do have the power to make a difference.”