Kurumba Maldives held a charity music festival on Friday, featuring 11 music acts ranging from solo Australian balladeers to local rock bands and traditional Bodu Beru drumming.
The Kurumba Maldives Music Festival, launched to coincide with the resort’s 40 year anniversary celebrations, was devised to raise US$5000 to purchase furniture, washing machines and other equipment for the state orphanage “Kudakudhinge Hiyaa”, based on the nearby island of Villigili.
Following three weeks of planning, event organisers said that yesterday’s event exceeded their fund-raising expectations, despite being the first such festival to be held at the resort.
The event’s organisers said that they had been particularly encouraged by the assistance received from sponsors and other local business. They also welcomed the Ministry of Finance in getting a temporary exemption from the country’s General Service Tax (GST) on food, drink and tickets sold to visitors attending the event.
“We were granted exemptions from paying GST for fund-raising, we were very lucky that the Ministry of Finance helped with this,” a resort spokesperson said, adding that the event had marked the first time it had been involved with fund-raising with local people.
“This was the first fund-raising of its kind to be held at a resort. We invited a lots of friends and suppliers of the resorts, so we didn’t know how much we would be receiving or how many bands would be arriving to perform. However, it was a really good day. We also had the children from the orphanage coming over to take part in activities like water sports as well.”
With about 53 children currently residing at the Villingili orphanage – eight of whom are said to be under one year of age – the site remains dependent on donations to feed, cloth and look after the children, according to the spokesperson for Kurumba’s fund raising team.
“You can see that they are well looked after, but the orphanage itself clearly lacks basic facilities. For instance, there are not enough high chairs for toddlers. Many of the property’s beds are also broken and there was just one washing machine for all the children,” said the spokesperson. “It’s therefore very hard for the orphanage to survive like this. Right now they are working on maintaining hygiene standards and providing food to the children. We hope to help where we can.”
All money raised through the festival will be used to purchase furniture and other items like washing machines through the resort’s own suppliers, to get the equipment as soon as possible.
“We are not going to give cash, instead we will directly be supplying items and goods as needed. This will allow us to get these things at our supplier rates and ensure the orphanage gets the benefit directly,” the resort spokesperson said.
“Some of the resorts here work in collaboration with more worldwide charities through their corporate social responsibility obligations,” said the spokesperson “With our 40th anniversary this year, and the resort being Maldivian-owned, we wanted to raise money for local causes and people.”
Split over two different sites on the resort, local groups and artists including Mcrew, DJ Paide, and Rock Paper Scissors were joined by international performers such as Australian singer/songwriter Ewan Procter. The line up was an eclectic mix of original compositions, cover versions and dance sets. A liberal sprinkling of stadium anthems were also provided – albeit in the more sedate backdrop of an wooden-decked Indian ocean resort property.
Despite praising the event’s outcome, Kurumba’s fund-raising team said the resort had to overcome some logistical issues in holding the small scale festival at the resort.
“We needed to be careful throughout the day to ensure we did not disturb guests. This is why we held the event at two different areas. In the evening we were required to move the performances from the beach area to our bar area so guests were not forced to participate if they did not want to. We are still a five-star resort after all.”