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Beyond The Bars is a 501(c)3 organization dedicated to bringing musical instruments and instruction to incarcerated and underserved youth. We use music to promote a means of self efficacy, expression, and outlets which have been consistently denied. Our programs--led by talented teachers and musicians--foster a creative atmosphere and provide well rounded and engaging musical sessions. Through this, we empower young men and women as they navigate the criminal justice system. We support our programs by fostering key partnerships with universities, community organizers, after school programs, the local music industry, and media publications.
The focus of Beyond the Bars is to help provide a space both inside and outside prisons where youth can gain a creative outlet, which will give them both a skill and a means of expression. Youth who participate in Beyond the Bars will have access to musical equipment and an instructor who will work with them as they learn how to perform and compose music within a band context. The targeted age group for Beyond the Bars is 14-18 but will continue to expand over time. It is at this age where adolescents struggle with how to express and define themselves amidst societal pressures. By having musical instruction and positive relationships with the instructors, youth involved in Beyond the Bars will be better prepared for the world outside the bars.
- Eric Ammon
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