Five days a week, a 9th-grader named Shaun travels an hour by bus from Germantown to meet his siblings Myriah and Jamaine at Rock to the Future (RTTF). This is Shaun’s second year attending the MusiCore after school program in North Philadelphia.
Shaun comes to RTTF every day because he loves to play the drums. He starting playing drums when he was three: “Whatever I heard in my head, I started playing. I’d play on the table, on the floor.” Now, he looks forward to spending his afternoons “drumming and making friends.”
Shaun struggles in school, but last year he improved his grades in all of his core classes. He has shown the RTTF staff how seriously he is trying to exceed the program’s academic expectations; now he’s focusing on his biology grades. He’s also working to meet his own musical goals. Shaun has set a personal goal of joining the RTTF student house band this year as a drummer. He recently mastered paradiddles, and he’s learning “Detroit” by Red Hot Chili Peppers to play in his upcoming recital.
Every year, he looks forward to performing on stage: “They turn on all the concert lights on the stage. I liked how the lights were shining on me.”
When asked what he wants to be when he grows up, Shaun has lots of ideas; the possibilities now seem endless. As a RTTF student, Shaun is learning valuable skills that go beyond music, like teamwork, self-confidence, and how to set and achieve goals. With the life skills he’s learning at RTTF, Shaun will be ready for every stage.
Thanks to our generous supporters, Rock to the Future is able to offer free programming and music education for hundreds of students like Shaun every year. By supporting RTTF, you help us:
- Provide free music education programming for over 300 youth in 2017
- Create an environment where kids of all ages and abilities feel confident, safe, and respected enough to share their voice
- Provide pathways out of poverty using music. Since inception, 100% of our MusiCore after-school program graduates have gone on to college or trade school.
At RTTF, we know that music can inspire and motivate kids and young adults to achieve. Your support of our year-end giving drive will help us to meet our $25,000 goal, which will be matched this year by a generous donor – that means that your donation is doubled!
Will you give the magical gift of music this year to help kids like Shaun?