Every year, Lighthearted will elect a different organization to support through our philanthropic efforts and events.
In 2018, Lighthearted will be benefiting El Sistema Colorado, whose mission is to empower children by providing an intensive music program that teaches the importance of teamwork, promotes self-confidence, and instills the value of social responsibility.
Drawing on the inspiration and approach from the original El Sistema established in Venezuela over 40 years ago, the founders of El Sistema Colorado envisioned free music programs for low-income students in Denver. At a time when school arts funding is severely limited, El Sistema Colorado is striving to fill the music education needs of three partner schools with Title I designations.
Low-income children are typically denied the benefits of music education as Title I schools increasingly focus limited resources on core curriculum and standardized testing. Deprived of the joy and enrichment that emanates from music programs, low-income children feel less engaged in school and the achievement gap that separates them from their privileged peers only grows.
El Sistema Colorado’s instrumental and choral ensembles provide such joy and enrichment while building students’ musical, social and cognitive skills. Central to its vision is enabling students to participate from early childhood through high school graduation. As the programs grow into full fruition, and their early participants advance through their educational careers, they are cultivating a community to support the young musicians’ academic success, self-confidence, creativity and social-emotional development.