As musicians and artists, it is important to be philanthropically involved in our immediate community (or global community) and use either our talents or other resources to help those less fortunate around us. Art is a soul language and it is fitting that those who practice it will invest in the “soul food” of the surrounding community. The good karma can only be positive.
At our school, we have partnered with the Salvation Army for both their Tools for Schools and Angel Tree campaigns. The first provides school supplies for those who would not otherwise have them for the upcoming school year. The second provides Christmas presents to children whose parents are not able to provide them. Both initiatives get our families at the school involved through donations, volunteering and monetary gifts.
The impact is significant. It’s so heartening to see young artists-in-training pitching in to meet the needs of their neighbors. While the actions are not necessarily “artistic”, the lessons and principles taught through activities are food for their hearts and minds which in turn contributes to their music making in lessons and recitals. As a school, we strongly believe that musicians and other artists should seek ways to be active in meeting the basic needs of those around them as much as we are able.
Some tips for getting involved in your community:
1) Find what you’re passionate about: Figure out what needs speak to you most and then go for it. In our case, our passion centers around children, especially school age children (it’s such a critical time for them). Thus our efforts are mostly focused in this age group.
2) Pick a reputable partner: There’s no reason to reinvent the wheel. There are so many great companies out there with groundwork laid already for their initiatives. Find one and say you want to help. That’s how we did it (we picked Salvation Army for their stellar reputation) and it’s grown every year since!
3) Get your families involved: It’s important for you as the artist and owner to set the example by participating, but make sure to encourage your students and families to work right along with you. The studio that volunteers together, stays together.