Children's Music Fund

Founded in 2002, Children's Music Fund provides music therapy to children with chronic conditions and life-altering illnesses such as cancer, hemophilia, Down's syndrome, cerebral palsy, juvenile arthritis, leukemia, muscular dystrophy, cleft palate, autism, seizure disorders and cystic fibrosis. Their volunteer, board-certified music therapists provide home-based weekly music therapy services for up to three months, as well as in-hospital group sessions and bed-side music therapy. CMF will use our grant of $3,841.17 to create a permanent, yet mobile interactive, multi-media-equipped instrument cart, branded with the name "Women Helping Youth's Music Heals on Wheels." It will be stocked with approximately 130 easy-to-sterilize, handheld and percussion-type instruments that will be accessible for young people who do not have sophisticated musical skills and are critical to the effectiveness of CMF's therapeutic music programming. Also equipped with music playing and recording capabilities, this cart will offer program facilitators an opportunity to download and play music for relaxation, enjoyment and demonstration purposes. Additionally, children making their own music will be recorded and saved on an e-file or DVD, which can be played later so the children continue to receive the healing benefits of their music experience long after CMF has gone. Research shows that therapeutic music-making can help lessen the burden of illness such as pain, sadness, stress, anxiety, low self-esteem, loneliness and frustration, and a minimum of 500 children each year will have access to Music Heals on Wheels. Interactive musical experiences will also create opportunities for self-expression and social communication, enhancing confidence and improving the quality of life for young people with chronic medical conditions and/or developmental disabilities.