Friends of Guatemala welcome multi-Juno winner to Lacombe

Valdy to play St. Andrew’s United Church on Nov. 23

The Friends of Guatemala is hosting a fundraising concert on Saturday, Nov 23 at St. Andrew’s United Church at 7 p.m.

“We are bring in the legendary, iconic Canadian performer Valdy. He is a multi-Juno award winner and besides some great music, we are also raising money to help Mayan people in Guatemala,” Organizer Doug Maas said.

Friends of Guatemala have been fundraiser in Lacombe for over 10 years and in the last five years, the group has worked on food security projects. This will be the second time the group welcomes Valdy to the stage.

“Valdy was with Gary Fjellgaard 10 years ago and it was an excellent concert that was sold out. This time we are able to get him on his own, which will be tremendous. He is a well-known Canadian performer and besides a great folk singer, he is a great performer on stage,” Maas said

The group works on these programs through a Christian womens organization called Fraternidad and they have been able to complete with a number of projects.

“Over the last five years, we have been supporting food security programs and we helping provide seed money for women in villages, one is called Tojalic that we finished, and now we are helping in a village called Elrincon,” Maas said. “We are helping people improve their health and nutrition. They are growing vegetables and raising chickens.

“It is our way of helping them with other groups in order help them be self-sufficient with nutrition in their diet.”

Maas said the group is excited to welcome back Valdy, an artist meant for the beautiful acoustics at St. Andrew’s.

“A number of our performers after the concerts have said the St. Andrew’s sanctuary is tremendous to perform in. Some of our artists have actually recorded their own music in there because the acoustics are tremendous,” Maas said.

Maas is hoping to fill the sanctuary, which holds 300 people

“That will raise a fair amount of money for Guatemalan people. Another reason we do these fundraisers is to bring to and promote arts and culture in Lacombe,” he said.

Tickets are available at the church office. They also can be purchased through Mass at 403 782 1860.

“We will probably have some tickets at the door but maybe not too many. Try to get there early,” he said.

He added, “If anyone wants to volunteer with the Friends of Guatemala, they can contact the church office.”

Maas also wanted to let the public know they do trips to Guatemala to work on and check on the communities they have helped.

“Everyone is welcome, everyone pays their own way and that means the money we raise for the Mayan people through our fundraisers goes directly to them,” he said.

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