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The Steven Spring Foundation (SSF), a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, was founded in 2005 to aid the survivors of Hurricane Katrina. Specifically, by supplying donated instruments and free musical instruction to anyone in need, SSF provides much-needed practical assistance to the musicians, music students and children of New Orleans as they struggle to recover from the disaster.
Since its beginning in October 2005, the SSF has realized the necessity of adapting to the ever-changing needs of the musical community in post-Katrina New Orleans. Initial efforts focused on collecting and distributing donated instruments to replace those lost in the storm, and that remains one of the SSF's most important and rewarding activities. Through its "Share the Joy of Music!" program, the SSF has provided hundreds of donated instruments to music students, amateur musicians, and professional performers. As the recovery effort has progressed, however, the SSF has expanded its focus from helping music students and musicians at the individual level to developing strong working relationships with local school systems as well. On a regional level, we have recently joined with The Feel Good Tour and the Million Closets Project to provide donated instruments to hurricane-impacted schools in Gulf Coast communities outside the greater New Orleans area. Locally, the SSF is providing piano tuning, moving and repair services to the Recovery School District. Here in our own New Orleans neighborhood, the SSF has become actively involved in helping to establish a band program at Frederick A. Douglass High School as part of our "Music to the People!" project, which offers free musical instruction to those in need, regardless of age or skill level. Our latest project is to set up a 2007 Summer Band Program for band students from Douglass and the surrounding Bywater/St. Claude neighborhoods.
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