Over the years, those of us involved with GPIFF have been involved with music to varying degrees - as students playing instruments during our school years, as parents and appreciative audience members, or as adult musicians. Involvement with school music programs has also become an important part of our lives.
As such, it has come to our attention that a great need exists for support of these programs and the students in them. Many students do not own their own instruments, and the instruments that their schools provide are often in need of repair or replacement, if available.
It is this need that has spurred us to create Georgia’s Play it Forward Foundation Inc, a 501(c)(3).
Our primary goal is simple: to provide instruments and financial assistance to students in need. We also believe in the power of ownership, as it instills a desire in the student to care for the instrument. We have seen this first hand with high school students and with some students that we have already helped. All we ask of the receiving student is that he/she donates the instrument to another student when he/she quits playing.
Another goal as the organization grows is to provide assistance to school music programs for sheet music purchases, and instrument repairs or purchases.
As mentioned above, many schools have instruments, but many are also in need of minor to serious repairs. An example is a school with eight bass clarinets of which only one works entirely correctly. Some need to be repaired while others need replacement. Unfortunately, a new student model (plastic) bass clarinet starts at $1,600 and does not provide the tonal quality of a wooden one that start at $3,800. Many school systems do not budget for new instruments for the programs at all and must rely on donations.
In future years, we want to offer scholarships to students who have benefited from our program or who are planning to major in music in college. While there are numerous scholarships available, the actual likelihood of qualifying and receiving one is low. We have also seen this first-hand through applications submitted by students we have known as they have set out to college.
That’s where we come in, and this is how you can help: any donation of any size would be greatly appreciated and accepted at this time – either instrumental or financial. We’re working hard to match musical instruments to students in need but we need your support.