IN OUR OWN BACKYARD

Jazz House KiDS an instrument for change in our own backyard

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AN INSTRUMENT FOR CHANGE

IN OUR OWN BACKYARD!

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row css_animation=”” row_type=”row” use_row_as_full_screen_section=”no” type=”full_width” angled_section=”no” text_align=”center” background_image_as_pattern=”without_pattern” css=”.vc_custom_1574006304659{padding-top: 50px !important;padding-bottom: 100px !important;}”][vc_column][vc_column_text]Your gift to JAZZ HOUSE KiDS brings community together to transform lives![/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

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[su_column]Jazz House Kids an instruments for change in our own backyard

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MEET NiiAbladey Otu, father of JAZZ HOUSE KiDS’ alum NiiAfotey

I am the son of immigrants from Ghana, and, like many families from our community, the importance of a good education is deeply instilled in me. My son NiiAfotey always said that he was going to be a doctor, but paying for college struck fear in my heart.  

At a young age, NiiAfotey demonstrated effortless athleticism and an aptitude for school work. I’d attend all his games and think, “EUREKA! He’ll be a scholar athlete and get paid to go to college.” However, when he was a freshman at Science Park High in Newark, he hung up his cleats to focus more on the rigorous academics. 

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NiiAfotey found a new passion: jazz.

Not ever having regular music classes in grade school, Intro to Instrumental Music class rocked his world. He was excited and inspired in his new environment and learned to play the alto sax. We splurged on an electric bass that Christmas, and he joined Science Park’s jazz band. I could see first-hand that his music was actually helping him focus more on his academics. 

With his instructor Mario Bank’s encouragement and tuition assistance from JAZZ HOUSE KiDS, NiiAfotey started classes at the JAZZ HOUSE and attended the JAZZ HOUSE Summer Workshop learning the upright bass. His development skyrocketed changing the trajectory of his life. While we are not a musical family, JAZZ HOUSE KiDS took him under its wings, giving him opportunities that we never dreamed possible. 

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Jazz can be a positive instrument of change…

Recently, I met with an immigrant father from my community who was worried that his daughter’s new found passion for jazz was taking away focus from her academics. I understood exactly where he was coming from, and I shared how jazz can be a positive instrument of change. I told him about my son who is currently a biology honors student at Norfolk State University and plays in the marching band & jazz band.  An academic scholarship pays half of the tuition and his music scholarship covers the other half. NiiAfotey is well on his way to becoming the professional that he wants to be and I’m so proud of who he has become. 

JAZZ HOUSE KiDS changes lives. Thank you for supporting this organization!

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2022 YEAR-END APPEAL

AN INSTRUMENT FOR CHANGE!

Through jazz, we provide world-class access, learning, career development + community building.