August Charity: Southwest Montana Flood Relief.

I feel like I say this every month, but choosing to donate a specific amount to a different charity this year has opened my eyes to so many organizations out there.

Of course, I wish we didn’t have to rally for these causes — especially for medical procedures such as abortion or cancer treatment for children. But, this is where we’re at, and I’m grateful I have a small bit to donate to help.

My charity for August is Southwest Montana Flood Relief: a partnership between the Park County Community Foundation and Greater Gallatin United Way.

Here’s a pretty comprehensive list of all the organizations helping the cause.

In June, Montana’s Yellowstone River reached historical levels and flooded sections of the park and nearby homes. This greatly affected area tourism— nearly everyone canceled their trips.

This area relies on tourism to keep going, not to mention cover the damage.

I probably wouldn’t have heard of this charity if it weren’t for John Mayer and his decision to host three benefit concerts for the organization.

Southwest Montana Flood Relief helps individuals and agencies affected by evacuations from homes, flooding, power outages, and water contamination.

Financial donations are expected for immediate needs of personal care, food replacement, supplemental income, vehicle damage/loss, home repairs, and other flood response needs yet to be identified in Park County, Madison County, and other areas of Southwest Montana impacted by flooding.

So, I was able to purchase a ticket to watch one of John Mayer’s charity concerts right from my apartment! The ticket price was less than the monthly amount I usually donate, so I made up the difference with a direct donation to the Greater Gallatin United Way.

For this concert, John Mayer performed “Born and Raised” acoustically, from start to finish, for the first time. It was fantastic!

“Born and Raised” is my favorite John Mayer album — aside from “Room for Squares” because that started it all — and it was quite special to hear all of the songs, along with his commentary on them.

Live music inspires me so much anyway, but seeing so many people brought together for a cause (and all the money that was raised) was really moving.

I truly hope the area gets the relief it needs, and who knows, maybe I’ll find myself in Yellowstone one day!

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