Scenes from the Thank You Festival concert

  • Fans wait for the show to start on the grass at Merriweather Post Pavilion, Columbia, Md., June 26, 2014.
  • Fans tailgate at the Merriweather Post Pavilion in Columbia, Md., June 26, 2014.
  • People dance during Alvin Risk’s set at the Merriweather Post Pavilion, Columbia, Md., June 26, 2014.
  • Fans look at a wall of handprints sponsored by the World Childhood Foundation at the Merriweather Post Pavilion in Columbia, Md., June 26, 2014.
  • Fans cheer for Cedric Gervais at the Merriweather Post Pavilion, Columbia, Md., June 26, 2014.
  • The sound board is seen at the Merriweather Post Pavilion, Columbia, Md., June 26, 2014.
  • William Watson III (right), owner of House Doctors, helps his team construct magnetic boards at the Merriweather Post Pavilion, Columbia, Md., June 26, 2014.
  • The USA World Cup match against Germany is seen on TV in the production office at the Merriweather Post Pavilion, Columbia, Md., June 26, 2014.
  • Empty seats at the Merriweather Post Pavilion, Columbia, Md., June 26, 2014.
  • The step-down from the DJ platform is seen at the Merriweather Post Pavilion in Columbia, Md., June 26, 2014.
  • Backstage at the Merriweather Post Pavilion in Columbia, Md., June 26, 2014.
  • Young fans Nick Wilkie, Brooke Weinstein, and Jacob Nelson wait for the show to start at the Merriweather Post Pavilion in Columbia, Md., June 26, 2014.
  • Fans during Above and Beyond’s set at the Merriweather Post Pavilion, Columbia, Md., June 26, 2014.
  • Balloons drop after the Raj Shah speech and right before Above and Beyond started playing at the Merriweather Post Pavilion, Columbia, Md., June 26, 2014.
  • Tiesto gestures to the crowd toward the end of his set at the Merriweather Post Pavilion, Columbia, Md., June 26, 2014.
  • The crowd enjoys Tiesto’s set at the Merriweather Post Pavilion, Columbia, Md., June 26, 2014.
  • Cedric Gervais on stage during his set at the Merriweather Post Pavilion, Columbia, Md., June 26, 2014.
  • The crowd reacts during Tiesto’s set at the Merriweather Post Pavilion, Columbia, Md., June 26, 2014. The concert was part of the Thank You Festival put on by Global Citizen and World Childhood Foundation.
  • Tiesto smiles during his set at the Merriweather Post Pavilion, Columbia, Md., June 26, 2014.
  • The crowd is seen during Tiesto’s set at the Merriweather Post Pavilion, Columbia, Md., June 26, 2014.
  • Fans during Above and Beyond’s set at the Merriweather Post Pavilion, Columbia, Md., June 26, 2014.

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Ask parents about what’s most precious to them, and there’s a good chance the answer is their kids.

Whether it’s here in America, or in the poorest communities in the world, parents share a commitment to ensuring that their kids have the very best start in life.

In large parts of sub-Saharan African and South Asia, ensuring that kids receive life-saving vaccines, get clean water and nutritious food can be a huge challenge.

It’s a challenge that parents are facing head on, and with support from governments, charities and business, huge progress has been made. Since 1990, the proportion of kids dying around the world has been cut in half, and it’s still falling.

The American public, charities and government have played a vital role in helping to make this happen.

In recognition of the American public’s efforts, and to call for further action on behalf of the world’s children, Global Citizen and World Childhood Foundation held the Thank You Festival at the Merriweather Post Pavilion on June 26, featuring Tiesto, Above & Beyond, Krewella, Alvin Risk and Cedric Gervais.

America should be proud of the role that it’s playing to help all children survive and thrive. Our foreign aid and our charitable contributions are saving and transforming lives, enabling parents and children in the poorest communities in the world to achieve their dreams.

Hugh Evans is the co-founder and CEO of the Global Poverty Project, a group dedicated to the elimination of extreme poverty through direct action.

Thomas Prior is an award-winning photographer based in New York. 

For more feature photography, go to msnbc.com/photography

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