Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

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October 4, 2022

‘Put it toward Palestine’: Austin rave for Palestine fundraises to evacuate family from Gaza

Medha Sarin
Singer audreyisarose performs at an ATX Parties for Palestine rave on Saturday. Proceeds from the event will go to helping a Palestinian family evacuate Gaza.

ATX Parties for Palestine raised $2,587 at its rave on Saturday to help evacuate a Palestinian family from the Gaza Strip, the creator of the initiative said. 

The South Austin rave featured local musicians, vendors and a letter-writing station to contact government representatives, said Teya Saadeh, creator of ATX Parties for Palestine. She said all proceeds from the $10 door fee go toward evacuating a Gazan family to Canada.

Saadeh said ATX Parties for Palestine raised over $12,000 at its first two events, most of which paid to send aid and electronic-sim cards, which allow Internet access, to Gazans through the Egyptian Food Bank and non-profit Connecting Humanity. However, she said the organization shifted its focus from providing basic necessities to funding the evacuation of a family as the Israel-Hamas war wages on. 

“We were reached out to by a woman in the community whose family friend in Canada is trying to evacuate 30 members of their family in Gaza,” Saadeh said. 

After the Oct. 7 Hamas attack and Israel’s ensuing invasion of Gaza, Saadeh, who is of Palestinian-Irish descent, said she wanted to support Gazans. Saadeh said she had zero event-planning experience, but friends and local organizers helped make ATX Parties for Palestine a reality.

“A lot of the people that actually went to the raves were very involved, very interested and became more interested through the rave (in) organizing for Palestine,” Saadeh said. 

A lineup of hardcore and punk bands energized the rave while vendors outside sold soaps and prints made by local Palestinian artisans and other merchandise. 

At least 200 people attended the Saturday show, Saadeh said. Raver Devyn Barnes said they attended the previous ATX Parties for Palestine tunnel rave on Jan. 20. That event attracted at least 500 people, Saadeh said.

“Not only was it really fun, but it’s just really great to see a bunch of people kind of come together for a cause,” Barnes said.

Despite the money raised, Saadeh said she’s disheartened to fund evacuations while the U.S. government supplies economic and military aid to Israel.

“I think that as people in the community (whose) tax dollars are going to fund that (displacement), the least we can do is at least help some of those people rebuild their lives,” Saadeh said.

Saadeh said she plans to continue events like tunnel raves to raise more money for Palestine.

“I really want to bring out all the communities again into a space for Palestine,” Saadeh said. “That’s really the goal.”

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