Mississippi Community Symphonic Band / Mississippi Swing! Big Band (Jackson, MS)

Partners: Christ United Methodist Church, Mississippi Music, Mississippi Association of Partners in Education, Chastain Middle School, Siwell Middle School, Davis Magnet IB School, Pelahatchie High School, Ardenland Entertainment

Students impacted: 150+ band and instrumental students
Volunteers: 20+
Partnership duration: 3 years 

Beginning in June 2015, as part of its 10th Anniversary Celebration, the Mississippi Community Symphonic Band’s all volunteer big band Mississippi Swing! hosted a used musical instrument drive to benefit local middle school band programs. The goal was to collect instruments that local middle schools could use as loaners to low-income families that could not afford to rent or purchase instruments for their children. Donated instruments are inventoried, tested, cleaned, repaired and stored until distribution. Since the first distribution, 14 schools representing 4 school districts have received musical instruments, and they're still coming in! 

Activities:

• Collaborative effort involving educators, local musicians, instrument repair technicians, local businesses

• Instrument repairs done by local volunteer musicians

• Donated instruments become property of the schools 

Impacts:

• As of January 2018, 120+ musical instruments collected and 108 distributed. Estimated value of instruments: $14,000- $20,000

• Increased student participation in instrumental music

• Majority of donated instruments are in use

• Musicians expressed joy in knowing their instruments would be used and appreciated by future generations

Governor's Awards by year