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Yamaha Partners with DonorsChoose.org to Supply Music Essentials for Classrooms

Mike Lawson • News • November 9, 2016

Yamaha Band and Orchestral division announced it will be partnering with DonorsChoose.org, an online nonprofit platform where teachers seek the resources their music students need most, to fund music education projects for the new school year.

With often limited funding from schools and districts, teachers spend on average $945 of their own money to equip classrooms with adequate supplies needed to bring music into the classroom. Yamaha’s $125,000 matching donation, which will generate $250,000 worth of supplies, will help lessen the financial burden teachers are faced with and provide the best environment for students to learn and succeed.

“I feel extremely fortunate to be part of an organization that cares deeply about the future of music education and leads the industry in supporting music educators who put their heart and soul into teaching the next generation of music lovers,” said Garth Gilman, vice president and general manager of the Band & Orchestral division at Yamaha Corporation of America.

Providing a well-rounded experience at schools with music education offerings will add to a higher-value workforce in the future that will pay dividends for years to come. Yamaha Artists Violinist Lindsey Stirling and Saxophonist Jeff Coffin have joined this effort, and are committed to helping ensure that young music students have the confidence, nurturing environment and music essentials they need to be successful.

One of the first projects Yamaha has funded is Mr. McFarlin’s high school music classroom in Madras, OR. At his school, many students come from low-income and struggling families, with 100% participation in the free and reduced lunch program. His students want to be involved in music, but without the proper materials, they’re not set up for success. Yamaha and DonorsChoose.org are making their dreams come true with the funding for drum sticks and reeds for McFarlin’s 105 music students this fall.

Another school to benefit from the campaign can be found in low-income, high-poverty East Palo Alto, California. “We need music in schools because it helps students learn to express themselves and gain real-life work skills while also teaching them how to be respectful and considerate of their classmates’ needs,” said Sarah Azevedo, Director of Bands at Ronald McNair Academy. “They learn to be good citizens in my class. My kids need music and, despite a lack of funding we sometimes face, I will fight for these kids to have the same opportunities as anyone else. DonorsChoose.org and Yamaha are making that possible.”

In addition to this project, Yamaha is committed to serving young musicians everywhere, with other efforts and partnerships including Yamaha Young Performing Artists Competition,Music for All and hundreds more instrumental music organizations in the United States. To view qualifying Yamaha-matching classroom projects visit 4wrd.it/musicessentials.

Visit www.donorschoose.org/intro to hear Oprah Winfrey and Stephen Colbert tell the DonorsChoose.org story.

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