In the aftermath of the hurricanes that struck Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands, over 2,300 students have been relocated to Florida. In Osceola County, arts educators and business leaders are partnering to provide support for some of these displaced students. Live Music Tutor, Inc. – run by Ted Gee – is an online service that provides interactive musical instruction and has been a strategic partner of the School District for three years. Working in tandem with the heads of the Fine and Performing Arts Department of the School District, Debbie Fahmie and Pam Haas, they are using music to heal.
Many of the young students entering the district are not only removed from their homes, but from their immediate families as well. Through inclusion in music programs during and after school, they can find new communities. They are able to connect with their new peers even if they do not speak the language. Moreover, participating in the arts provides an outlet – a way for students to express themselves and engage with themselves on an emotional level. During this time of transition and the unknown, access to these programs has been essential.
Through the project Music Helps Heal, Live Music Tutor, Inc. has been helping the school district acquire more instruments and bilingual instructors. Live Music Tutor, Inc. proves that when businesses understand the transformative power of music, the whole community can band together.