SPRINGFIELD, Mo.– What originally started out as dinners to feed the homeless has now fully involved into an annual event to help prevent homelessness.

The 11th annual Stomp the Blues Out of Homelessness featured plenty to eat, drink and to listen to.

Jim Payne, one of the founders of the festival says the events taking place Saturday look very different than they were over a decade ago.

“It started at church, we were going to wanted to start this meal program at Bill’s place,” Payne said. “Bill’s place is no longer there, but that’s how it evolved. A local guy that had a blues show, Bob Martin, he helped me put the first show on in 2011.”

The festival helps raise money to support organizations that try to help with homelessness or people close to homelessness.

“Today it’s more of a preventative where we help youth organizations,” Payne said. “The Darr House, Laura’s Home. And then there’s the Rare Breed, Women In Need of the Ozarks is another one and then the last one is US Play Forward Southwest Missouri.”

Some additional groups may benefit from this event, such as the Good Samaritan Boys Ranch. We talked to a couple of people with the Ranch who say any help is always appreciated.

“Our main purpose is to provide youth in foster care. First off, a place to live, a safe place to be. And we cannot do that without funding from all of our supporters. That’s our community. That’s our state.” Director of Transitional Living Alissa Jecklin said. “It’s incredibly important to provide resources and life skills training to our youth. And we need monetary assistance to do that.”

Jecklin says around 25% of the youth that age out of the foster care system become homeless at some time after that.

To learn more about the festival from Saturday you can visit their website.