MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — A benefit concert is set for this Saturday at the Cedar Cultural Center in Minneapolis to raise money for the victims of the Cedar High Apartments fire.
The fire killed five people who lived on the high-rise building’s 14th floor on the day before Thanksgiving. Minneapolis Police are investigating the cause as accidental.
Immediately after the fire happened donations came pouring in and the People’s Center, along with GiveMN, consolidated the donations into one fund.
Paula Guinn with the People’s Center says they have raised more than $88,000 so far. The funds have been given to the families of the deceased to help with end-of-life expenses, as well as the surviving 14th floor resident to help them relocate.
They are also now able to use donated money to help residents lower on the priority list, but who still have needs.
“I visit with folks who are maybe five floors up, but they talked about how they had to throw away all of their clothing because of the smoke, and they just couldn’t get it out,” Guinn said.
The money from the benefit concert will go towards these lower priority needs. The concert will include live local bands and spoken word performances. It’s free and open to the public, but people are encouraged to donate.
Community leader Abdirizak Bihi says it has been overwhelming to see how many people donated.
“We feel valued, we feel included, we feel loved by everyone in this community,” Bihi said. “It’s amazing how Minnesotans come together, whether it’s here in Cedar-Riverside or Drake Hotel in downtown.”