Zackariah and the Non-Profits aren’t just about the money
Three young Calgary musicians recently created a non-profit charity organization called Zackariah and the Non-Profits. Sadly, the non-profit came to life because their friends' were murdered in April.
Zackariah Rathwell and Josh Hunter were two of five Calgarians stabbed at party in Brentwood on April 15, Calgary's worst mass slaying to date.
Kaiti Perras, Jordan Segura, and Lawrence Hong were the other victims of the tragedy, which happened at a house party marking the end of the school year at the University of Calgary. The victims ranged between the ages of 21 and 27.
Matthew de Grood, 22, has been charged with five counts of first-degree murder in connection with the stabbings.
Victims of the Brentwood Stabbing
Rathwell and Hunter were just beginning to celebrate the release of an EP recorded by their band Zackariah and the Prophets when they were murdered.
Kyle Tenove, a bassist, and Barry Mason, a guitarist/singer, are the two surviving members of Zackariah and the Prophets.
The tragic loss of two close friends and bandmates sparked Tenove and Mason, in conjunction with Hailey Laycraft, to develop Zackariah and the Non-Profits, a charity that has raised $40,000 since they kicked off their campaign on Aug. 12. Their big event was a fundraising night of music at the Southern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium on Sept. 4.
Laycraft handled a majority of the paperwork and went back and forth with the provincial government to register the non-profit, and comply with the different codes set out for such groups.
"It was a fairly simple process, a little bit of paper work, and just establishing what we would be doing and where the money would be going," says Laycraft. "There are standards that have been set, for what a non-profit that is registered on a provincial level, what kind of organizations they can donate to."
Tenove says the process of creating the non-profit and organizing the Sept. 4 concert was somewhat therapeutic.
"Dealing with the event and starting the charity, it was almost like therapy for myself that I kind of just made up. Everything was made up, but I had the people around me and the support system to allow that to happen," says Tenove.
The Sept. 4 fundraiser at the Jubilee, a venue donated by the Government of Alberta, took a lot of work to organize, says Tenove.
"We dedicated so much time to just getting there, and on the way we met so many people to help us do it."
The event, titled "High Hopes," echoed a Zackariah and the Prophets song but also represented what the organizers hoped to achieve with the concert. Tenove says the night of music was symbolic of high hopes for the future because of how hard the tragedy was on them personally, and on the family and friends of the five victims.
High Hopes featured five local bands, including a tribute to Zackariah and the Prophets featuring Tenove and Mason.
"The bands are a lot closer," says Tenove. "All the bands that played the Jubilee for High Hopes were the central bands for us."
Tory Rosso, a Calgary artist who met Zackariah and the Prophets through the music scene, now plays with Tenove and Mason in a new band called Brother Prussia.
Josh Hunter was one of the first people Rosso played music with. Mason says music was what brought them all together and it is music that is keeping them together.
"Having a huge, warm, supporting community, like all our friends and all musicians was what helped them deal with the tragic event," says Rosso."My phone rang every second of every day and now it doesn't ring anymore."
- Kyle Tenove, one of the founders of the Zacharia and the Non-Profits charity.
Tenove says the $40,000 they raised will be split between five charities and non-profit organizations. He acknowledges there has been an adjustment period since the High Hopes event.
"It's like an aftershock after something like that ends. We kind of went, 'What do we do now?' My phone rang every second of every day and now it doesn't ring anymore."
Another event could be held in the near future.
Laycraft says, "Kyle and I are already starting to discuss an event for next summer, and trying to get the ball rolling. With the last event we only had a month or two to throw it together, so we're hoping to have substantially more time to put it together and advertise."
Although the High Hopes event can be considered a success, Tenove is looking to create a bigger buzz with the next fundraiser show.
"We are kind of brainstorming right now, but the next one we want to make it bigger. The biggest thing for me dealing with these kinds of events is that we're not really thinking about the money value," says Tenove.
He explains: "High Hopes was more about just putting on an event, like the money was almost secondary. The only reason why the money was important was where it was going." Tenove continues, "It was about just bringing people together and enjoying ourselves."
Their goal is to raise $65,000 by Aug. 12, 2015. Tenove says it's "phenomenal" they are already at $40,000.
Tenove, Mason, and Rosso are continuing their passion of music while also raising money for their non-profit charity by selling T-shirts and CDs with proceeds going to the charity. Zackariah and the Non-Profits are also accepting donations from their website http://www.zatnp.org.
- By CAROLINE FYVIE