With many music programs across the country losing vital funding, the foundation helps under-served schools that don't have adequate funds to purchase or repair their instruments.
An application for support was submitted by South Bend Schools and the foundation found their program to be a worthwhile investment, allowing more students to be able to play and experience the benefits of music education.
“This was a very pleasant surprise, “commented South Bend Supt. Mike Morris. “Mrs. Perry, our music teacher, has done an unbelievable job in her short time here. Music is important to our district and we believe it is a very important part of education. We have mandatory band for grades 5-6 with 75 kids involved, we have flexibly built junior high band into our class schedule and have over 50 kids in that program. We currently have 46 kids in high school band”, added Morris. Morris also said that the district readily accepts instrument donations if someone has them collecting dust somewhere.
“Learning music in school is a way to engage kids and give them something that makes them better students and better people,” said Felice Mancini, President and CEO of The Mr. Holland’s Opus Foundation. “They deserve every tool available to help them receive a quality education, and we want to insure that music is in that toolbox."
The Mr. Holland's Opus Foundation donates new and refurbished musical instruments to under-served schools in an effort to give youngsters the many benefits of music education, help them to be better students and inspire creativity and expression through playing music. The organization was inspired by the 1995 motion picture Mr. Holland’s Opus and founded by Michael Kamen, who composed the music for the movie and countless others. In the last 16 years, over 15,000 new and refurbished instruments have been donated to over 1,300 schools across the country.
More information can be found at www.mhopus.org