Upstage Gallery hosts food drive, concert

Nicole Stormann

Topeka Aids Project is well known for its confidential case management, support groups and AIDS prevention programs, but something most people aren’t aware of is its food pantry.

The Jayhawk Theater and Upstage Gallery hosted a TAP food drive/concert benefit on April 9, along with the help of sponsors like OPEN and Traig Consulting. Traig Consulting provided the refreshments OPEN volunteers served at the event.

“Most people don’t realize how expensive these medications are, and after people buy their medicine there’s sometimes not a lot of money left over for food,” said Resa Boydston, volunteer coordinator at Jayhawk Theater and Upstage Gallery. “TAP’s pantry was getting extremely low, so we started planning this event at the end of last semester, hoping that other student organizations would participate.”

To prepare for this event, all 115 Washburn student organizations were invited to participate by bringing in as much food as possible for TAP. Local musician Charles McVey performed at the event, and although the concert was technically free, concert-goers were encouraged to bring five cans of nonperishable food items per person.

In all, roughly 210 cans and 21 boxes of food were collected for TAP.

“I was very happy with the response we got, and everyone else was happy also,” said Boydston. “We hope to do this event annually.”