YouTube singing sensation Maria Aragon is headlining a benefit concert in her hometown of Winnipeg tonight for Typhoon Haiyan relief efforts.
The 13-year-old singer, who shot to stardom when Lady Gaga noticed a YouTube video of her singing "Born This Way," is performing at (Show) for the Philippines at the Burton Cummings Theatre.
Proceeds from Friday night's concert will support the Canadian Red Cross. Organizers are hoping to raise more than $60,000.
Typhoon Haiyan struck central Philippines on Nov. 8 and is considered to be one of the strongest typhoons on record.
The death toll from the storm has topped 5,000 and is expected to keep climbing.
"Seeing what's happening now, it's terrible," Aragon told CBC News before Friday's event.
The fundraising concert has special meaning for the singer, who, like many in Manitoba's Filipino community, has been personally affected.
"I do have family in the affected area on my mom's side, but we're very lucky because there weren't any casualties," she said, adding that there was damage to her mother's aunt's house.
Many in Manitoba's Filipino community have been impacted by the typhoon. For example, one man working in Neepawa, Man., learned that 32 of his relatives died in the storm.
The Filipino Journal's Ron Cantiveros organized the event in 10 days, with the help of friends and partners, because he wanted to keep raising money for typhoon victims who still face a long, tough road ahead.
"The rebuilding effort's going to take a decade. It's going to take years in the Philippines," he said.
"It can certainly stir your heart to do more."