The deadline for applications was March 22nd and Music Doing Good with Scholarships received 148 — a record number of applicants and double the amount from last year. More than 60% of the applications came from new students who have not yet applied to the program. We anticipate giving approximately $80,000 to students in grades 4 – 12 who wish to continue music studies through private lessons and music workshops. Needless to say, Music Doing Good was overjoyed!
A critical indicator in these collective applications that has the greatest impact on the family economy is the hospitalization or ongoing medical care of a family member. It will cripple the family economy for years to come. Under this burden, music lessons become a low priority for most families. Conversely, parents of low income families are working two and three jobs to ensure that music lessons remain accessible to their children.
From a national perspective, the threat of dissolution of the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) and the looming implications of the Heath Care Act of 2017, does not bode well for most families living near the poverty line.
Another observation from the evaluation process was that so many students, for whatever reason, who don’t get support for music lessons at home, have music teachers and orchestra or band directors who are diligent about shepherding their students’ music education. They assist in filling out scholarship applications and often offer their instruction for free. It is truly endearing to see teachers who understand the value of music in the development of their students.
The number of applicants using music to “do good” in the community is overwhelming. We are amazed to see their empathy and caring for the less fortunate and elderly by bringing music into their lives.
We are honored that these families shared so much of their lives with us through the application process. We want to ensure that their children develop critical life skills that are actualized by the power of music.