Blues News

KTBA Fosters Hispanic Culture Through Guitar Donations

HOUSTON, TX – Thanks to your donations, Keeping the Blues Alive Foundation donated six (6) Full Size Beginner Guitars to middle school students at Edison Middle School in Houston, TX.

Edison Middle is a Title I school located in Houston’s East End. Ms. Ronda Pohner teaches band; however, she wanted to bridge the gap for students who took up interest in guitar in elementary school, but didn’t have a guitar program between elementary and high school.

“My students are from a Title I school in the heart of Houston, Texas,” Ms. Pohner said. “They are enthusiastic about learning how to play musical instruments.  [They] are curious learners and ready to take on new and exciting experiences that expand their musical abilities.

This project will bring the learning experience to middle school students who often come to me from their elementary schools with guitar experience. The feeder high school offers a guitar program. Unfortunately, there isn’t a guitar program at the middle school level. Students are often forced to choose to either give up the guitar or learn how to play a wind instrument.

My goal is to bridge that gap between elementary and high school guitar programs by offering a classical guitar program to middle schoolers after school at first and then eventually as an ensemble class, in lieu of one of my band classes.

Students can take them home to practice.”

Ms. Ronda Pohner sent a photo of the new guitars arriving to the classroom.

With six new guitars, it will become easier to have group sessions with the students and although guitar strings and accessories aren’t cheap, there are bulk deals that can be worked out so that they can continue learning how to switch out strings and tune the guitars regularly.

“We are definitely ready to learn and explore the vibrant genres and cultures of classical guitar!” she exclaims.

Thanks to the re-instatement of the Weekly Donation Program at KTBA, we were able to complete the fundraising cycle for Ms. Pohner’s classroom.  Her guitars arrived safely and the students are already digging into their lessons!

Ms. Ronda expresses her gratitude:

Dear Keeping The Blues Alive Foundation, Inc.,

I would like to sincerely thank everyone who donated to my project. I have an incredible amount of students who asked to learn how to play guitar. With this project, I can help students achieve their dreams! My dream was to bridge that gap between elementary and high school guitar programs at the middle school level! You helped me do just that!

With gratitude,
Ms. Pohner

COVID-19 completely decimated the donation program but, ladies and gentlemen, we’re back!

If you’d like to make a donation, please consider using this donation form to send us a small gift to keep it going! It’s music lovers and blues fans like yourselves which keep the flames of music education burning in schools across the country.



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