May 19, 2021

Virtual Lessons + School Donations on the Horizon

Rockin' Out
Rockin' Out

Since our last report, Can'd Aid has completed five separate instrument donations to organizations in four states, totaling 121 instruments. In January, Can'd Aid donated four guitar, cases, capos and tuners to Shiloh House in Colorado, an organization that serves at-risk youth and their families, providing services and helping them overcome trauma. Accompanying this donation was a series of lessons from drummer Tyler Thompson, of nationally touring band Fruition. Months later, teacher Molly Morgan reported that "programs like this are extremely meaningful to [our youth] and they are still talking about it."

Also in January, TUNES Ambassadors Bevin Foley of Americana band Trout Steak Revival and Abby Bryant of Abby Bryant and the Echoes started a round of virtual violin and keyboard lessons respectively. Foley was continuing a second round of lessons with the same group of students from Central Music Academy in Lexington, KY and Bryant launched a new set of lessons with students for 11 students with brand new donated keyboards at Music Education & Performing Artists Association (MEPAA) in Eugene, OR. 

In March, Can'd donated a variety of percussion instruments to Central Music Academy in Lexington, KY, with plans to offer a series of lessons with drummer Mike Ashworth of Grammy-winning bluegrass band Steep Canyon Rangers in summer. A wide range of drums, guitars, microphones and thumb pianos were donated to Boys & Girls Club of Weld County in Colorado to help launch their new digital music program for at-risk teens. In honor of International Women's Day, nine complete violin setups were donated to MEPAA, an organization that "creates encouraging, positive spaces for artistic expression for women and youth artists, and fosters mentor relationships between developing and established artists." The violin donations were direct-to-student, and accompanied by a series of five personalized virtual lessons with Bevin Foley. These lessons aim to increase confidence, inspire and empower the female students by fostering a relationship with a professional female musician. Three lessons in, and Executive Director, Matrisha Armitage, reports that all students are doing great, remaining focused and dedicated regardless of the non-traditional lesson format. 

An additional set of lessons are currently in progress in Austin, TX for teens at Kids in a New Groove, an organization dedicated to "empowering youth in foster care to transform their futures through music mentorship." Complete guitar setups including guitars, tuners, books and gig bags were donated to five students, and Sam Wharton, of bluegrass band Songs from the Road Band is teaching students the basics and imparting his knowledge and wisdom to the next generation of musicians. As Covid restrictions continue to lift in schools nationwide, we are looking forward to drawing from the knowledge gained from virtual lessons and direct-to-student donations to make more meaningful and impactful donations and assemblies in our more traditional in-person format.

Thank you to all who have donated and continue to support Can'd Aid's MUSIC + ARTS program! As TUNES Ambassador Sam Wharton puts it - "music will change your life if you let it."

Alyssa Lile
Program + Outreach Manager
Can'd Aid

Keyboard Lessons in OR
Keyboard Lessons in OR
Keyboard Lessons in OR 2
Keyboard Lessons in OR 2
Rock on!
Rock on!
Mar 22, 2021

Ongoing Water Efforts for Navajo Nation and 250,000 Cans Sent in Response to TX Emergency

Water Run at Sleeping Giant Brewing Photo 1
Water Run at Sleeping Giant Brewing Photo 1

As efforts to provide Navajo Nation residents monthly shipments of water continue (with an additional truckload arriving this month) - Can'd Aid's WATER + RESPONSE program efforts were immediately and temporarily redirected in the wake of extreme weather across Texas that left millions without access to clean water. Nearly 250,000 cans of water were sent to communities across Texas and Kentucky to assist with relief efforts.

Can'd Aid received a rocket-fueled boost when comedian Chelsea Handler funded an entire truckload of water, then celebrated her birthday skiing nearly naked and requested additional support for our Texas water efforts on social media - which created a massive people-powered surge of support. Handler's post helped Can'd Aid has raise over $18,000 from 437 donors and gain over 1,500 new followers on social media. 

Another positive development in Can'd Aid's WATER + RESPONSE program comes in the form of a new partnership with canning partner Sleeping Giant Brewing - whose first run of cans was sent to Navajo Nation residents in mid-February. Between Oskar Blues Brewery and the addition of Sleeping Giant Brewing Company, Can'd Aid has doubled our ability to respond quickly with shipments of clean drinking water for communities in need.

Since our most recent project report:

Navajo Nation | Covid-19 Relief Water Shipments

  • 1/21 - Navajo Nation (Sage Memorial Hospital) in Ganado, AZ | 50,400 cans
  • 1/21 - Superior Unified School District in Superior, AZ | 27,600 cans
  • 2/21 - Chinle Chapter House in Chinle, AZ | 36,000 cans 
  • 2/21 - Kayenta Fitness Center in Chinle, AZ | 16,800 cans
  • (In Progress) - Navajo Nation 

Texas | Extreme Weather Emergency Water Shipments

  • 2/24/21 - City of Austin in AustinTX | 50,400 cans
  • 2/28/21 - Houston Food Bank in HoustonTX | 50,400 cans 
  • 3/3/21 - Plano Food Bank in Plano, TX | 25,200 cans
  • 3/3/21 - Houston Food Bank in Houston,TX | 50,400 cans 
  • 3/3/21 - Ben  E. Keith in San Antonio,TX | 25,200 cans

Kentucky | Flooding/Water Boil Emergency Water Shipments

  • 3/5/21 - Breathitt County Emergency Mgmt Agency in Jackson, KY - 48,000 cans

Thank you for supporting Can'd Aid's WATER + RESPONSE efforts!

Alyssa Lile
Program + Outreach Manager

Water Run at Sleeping Giant Brewing Photo 2
Water Run at Sleeping Giant Brewing Photo 2

Links:

Jan 19, 2021

Ongoing Lessons + 22 New Donations in 22 States

As COVID-19 related restrictions continue to evolve, Can'd Aid's virtual lesson program offers a steady source of music education and personalized attention to underserved music students cities across the U.S. In addition to virtual lessons, Can'd Aid finished out the end of the year by fulfilling the instrument and equipment requests of 22 public school teachers in 22 individual states - on just one day. 

Bevin Foley, TUNES Ambassador and violinist with Trout Steak Revival just began a third round of lessons with violin students from Central Music Academy - even putting on a "virtual recital" to which parents/guardians were invited to attend. Eight keyboards and stands were donated to Music Education & Performing Artists Association (MEPAA), and Abby Bryant of Downtown Abby & The Echoes starts a brand new five-lesson series with these students starting Sunday 1/17/21. Currently - a series of stand up bass lessons are in the work, and Can'd Aid is in the process of launching virtual guitar lessons with an organization out of Colorado.

In December, Can'd Aid decided to spread a little extra holiday cheer in the form of drums, chimes, records, guitars, ukuleles and more.  Utilizing the platform, Donors Choose, where public school programs list their music program needs, seeking donations of any size - Can'd Aid fulfilled the requests of 22 public school music programs nationwide. 

As musicians continue navigating this abruptly-altered and evolving industry - our virtual lesson program is growing to forming more mutually beneficial partnerships for TUNES Ambassadors and organizations in need. $1,500 stipend for each series of five lessons in order to support them during this challenging time.

To all of those who have donated to this campaign, thank you. Since publicizing this campaign, your donations have helped Can'd Aid to launch a brand new program to adapt to evoling needs, donate 721 instruments in 2020, and offer 30 music lessons to children in need.

Alyssa Lile
Program + Outreach Manager
Can'd Aid

 
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