Investing in Memphis, its youth, its communities and its musical legacy by broadening and strengthening existing music engagement offerings in and out of schools and supporting youth-centered, community-based music spaces.Why Music?
Music gave many of us a chance to be seen for the first time, from naming your instrument with pride to finding kinship in the school choir. Every child, no matter where they live, deserves to be seen and deserves an opportunity to flourish; and music can help make this happen. In Memphis, innovation, like music, is in our blood. The same energy and elements that created soul, blues and that support Memphis’ iconic sound, can and should be used to instill in its youth agency, purpose, and meaning and to help make their communities vibrant spaces.
Despite its strong cultural assets, Memphis is facing a difficult socioeconomic climate and many challenges serve as critical barriers to youth success.
40 of Memphis youth live below the poverty line
more than26 of youth in many of Memphis' most underserved neighborhoods won't graduate from high school.
less than5 of Memphis youth have access to after-school music programming compared to 15-20% in similar cities.
Research demonstrates the powerful role music engagement focused youth development activities can play in equipping youth with the skills, attitudes, and behaviors needed to overcome these barriers and succeed in school and life.
Strengthening problem-solving skills
Encouraging communication and creative expression
Teaching tenacity and the value of hard work
Deepening engagement in school and learning community
Sustain existing in-school music education and expand instruction through partnerships with local musiciansLearn More
Expand high-quality out-of-school time programs to reach more youth and remove barriers to youth engagement and participationLearn More
Working with community leaders, organizations and musicians, develop places to spur innovation where youth can hear, learn, and play musicLearn More