Verona singer-songwriter raises money for students

Verona musician Pat Ferguson raised approximately $1,800 during his first ever live streamed concert, a two-hour performance shared on Facebook from the comfort of his living room on Sunday, March 29.

Racking up nearly 4,000 views, Ferguson had set a $1,000 goal for charity, which he blew past with the help of around 50 supporters. Ferguson will donate the money to Connecticut-based nonprofit Save the Children, to provide for youth in need during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Ferguson is a singer-songwriter who performs folk, Americana and bluegrass style music. He tours extensively in support of his music, but all of his spring and summer tour dates have been postponed.

His two daughters are students at Core Knowledge Charter School. Ferguson said the girls’ transition to learning from home was “virtually flawless” thanks to the school providing every student with an iPad.

Ferguson realizes not every student home from school is as fortunate as his daughters, or have iPads provided by their schools.

“We really began to realize how incredibly fortunate we are,” Ferguson said. “The one to one student to iPad ratio helped facilitate learning. The girls did not skip a beat in terms of where they were at with lesson plans.”

That realization prompted Ferguson to want to help children in need. He began researching charities providing to youth affected by COVID-19. He discovered Save the Children, which provides food, health care essentials and books to help kids stuck at home from school.

“Save the Children have mobilized and developed a specific focus for COVID-19, an effort I admired a lot,” Ferguson said.

Leveraging his Facebook fan page for his music, which has nearly 2,300 followers, and his Instagram, which has over 1,100 followers, Ferguson spent a week promoting that he was going to be holding a concert on March 29.

Ferguson was humbled by the response, but admits it’s only a small contribution.

“While the amazing effort floored us, it doesn’t put a dent in the 30 million kids affected by this, it’s only a fraction of what the larger effort is,” he said. “Kids depend on schools for meals and a safe haven from difficult home lives.”

Neal Patten, community reporter, can be contacted at neal.patten@wcinet.com.