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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Arts & Culture, Arts Education, International, International Cultural Exchange, International Exchange

Mission: We are dedicated to creating positive social change through music education.

Results: Nine music schools and programs have been created in South Africa, Ghana, Mali, Rwanda, Nepal and Thailand. More than 700 kids attend free classes in dance, instruments, languages and musical theory, all taught by qualified local teachers. Projects also meet basic needs for some of the world’s most economically vulnerable children. This includes primary education, literacy, and the provision of humanitarian aid such as food, medicine, clothes, books and school supplies. Solar light and energy, laptop computers, and other modern technology have also been introduced in areas where previously unavailable.

Target demographics: provide music and inspiration to children

Geographic areas served: Africa, Argentina, Bangladesh, Brazil, Ghana, Mali, Mexico, Morocco, Nepal, Rwanda, South Africa, Thailand, USA

Programs: free classes in music, dance, instruments, languages and musical theory, all taught by qualified local teachers Projects also meet basic needs for some of the world’s most economically vulnerable children. This includes primary education, literacy, and humanitarian aid such as food, medicine, clothes, books and school supplies. Solar light and energy, laptop computers, and other modern technology have also been introduced in areas where previously unavailable.

Community Stories

12 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

6 Hannah30

Volunteer

Rating: 4

I have helped to organise a fund-raising event annually for the last three years in the Uk for the Playing for Change organisation; primarily because I agree with their philosophy that music is a unifying force and language in a very fragmented world, and secondarily because it is good to see the fruits of this fund-raising benefitting children and young people all over the world through musical education. I know the events we have held in Cumbria (Uk) have been life-changing in a most positive way for all who have participated and attended as well as for all those who have benefitted from the money raised. I hope and trust that Playing for Change will continue to grow and help change the world for the better. Hannah Appleyard

Comments ( 1 )

shauna Thank you so much for sharing these positive words, Hannah! We are so grateful to YOU for being part of the movement and for mobilizing your local community in support of the global community. Your efforts have, indeed, been life changing for many. One Love!

Shirley V.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I was introduced to Playing for Change by my son. Music has always been a big part of our lives. I absolutely love that the foundation does everything to bring music from around the world together. That they go tbe extra mile to help build schools and bring music to the children in areas of the world that do not have the opportunities to learn and play music. Just so wonderful. So thank you Playing for Change for the joy you bring to myself and everyone else.

1 Valerie88

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I would like to thank God and 4 the amazing grace of incredible music! Secondly, a big thank you to the Playing For Change Foundation 4 exposing healing music to our kids and all who need a dose of healing mainly as we all get older! Music has helped with increasing my mental thoughts with writing and reading! Most importantly music has helped my life and has helped me to manage with nerve pain which is because of being born with autoimmune diseases in the 1950's. Music can cure anything we go through from missing somebody with all of the glorious memories of certain tunes to make us smile on the inside as well as the outside. I don't know what I would do without music and I would like to thank the Playing For Change Foundation for recognizing just what music can do 4 healing illness and disease minds, souls and bodies!. Music can really help solve so many of the problems of the sick world we live in and thank you so much showing this to the world by Playing For a Change in the world ! Blessings and God bless

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

From the moment I arrived till the moment I reluctantly left I felt safe happy and free, isn't that the the point of a festival to feel that the world can be a happy place filled with smiles music and peace! Playing for change has the added bonus of spectacular surroundings which just adds to the good feeling of a good time for a good cause! A winner :)

Gill R.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

The Cumbria UK Playing For Change event was by far the most enjoyable event of the social calendar this year. The secret and magical location, the flawless organisation of the dedicated team, the considerable creative thought that went into ensuring that all present had the time of their lives all in a good cause, is something this charity should be immensely proud of.
Everyone I spoke to said there was a feeling of homecoming about the event, like an enormous family gathering of like-minded people.
Fine artists, circus performers, bands, solo artists, DJ's, technicians and volunteers all offered their services for free to unite us all in a magical weekend of rhythm and dance. The feedback afterwards suggested that this was a life-changing event for some. To arrive at a place knowing no-one and being welcomed into a fold that only existed in your dreams, has altered the perception of those attendees who have grown accustomed to a daily diet of bad news and shown them that love really can exist without any ulterior motives. To leave the event exhausted but glowingly happy with the contact details of a host of wonderful people who are now friends for life is amazing. Thank you Playing For Change in all that you do.

Jane57

Donor

Rating: 5

Years ago I heard Grandpa Elliot singing on Royal street in New Orleans and I thought I had stumbled upon an angel. The last time I saw Grandpa Elliot in New Orleans I got his CD Sugar Sweet and later the Stand by Me CD. The first time I listened to the CD and watched the dvd I cried and smiled so big! I felt a deep heart connection to all the musicians in the Stand by Me video and I feel the same heart connection to the many musicians around the world who are making such a difference not only in the world but in the communities and in the lives of so many children. PFC is a true blessing on the world.

Previous Stories

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I have been following Playing for Change since their first CD. I was already a big fan of Grandpa Elliot, Washboard Chaz, and Roberto Luti,from my New Orleans days .I have never felt more inspired or moved by a group of musicians.They have such heart and soul I have no doubt their music and voices will change the world. What they are doing for the children and generations to come is the greatest gift imaginable. God bless them and the Playing for Change Foundation.

1 DanaBorontis

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Actually, I found out about them quite randomly, when a friend of mine sent me one of their songs when I was in a bad mood. It instantly changed my feelings. I searched more information about them online, and I believe a lot in the work they are doing. Although I am a little bit far away (all the way in Romania, europe), I would love to make an event Playing for Change! Love their work!

1 Quita F.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Playing. For change foundation is an organisation that puts "their money where their mounths" are in terms of implementing their vision. The children of this world is our greatest asset and we should nurture and harvest their talents. We as an organisation in South Africa support them in their endeavours and also promote them for their good work because they deserve it. Alpha Fransman (SAFY) - South Africa

1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I found Playing for Change during a time when I was completely disillusioned with nonprofits. Just watching their video of musicians from all over the world brought me to tears. I love the Universal language of love and music is it. I have bought their CDs, attended their concert in Atlanta with my husband and daughter, both musicians and all three of us were in tears of joy by the end. I attended Playing for Change Day this year in Florida at a Biker Bar (where I would not have ever gone) We were the only black people there, but wow, the Playing for Change crowd was just what we expected, full of love, good food and slamming music. Not only do we get to enjoy the music but we know our donations contribute to children all over the world benefiting from music.....which means if this continues and multiplies we should have the sound of "love" all over our planet in a few more generations with the intended purpose to bring love and peace to all of humanity. This is one charity I believe spends most of their dollars on the intended purpose, to build music schools, share the love of music and engage people of good will and conscious all over our planet.

3 Glinda M.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I have been following the Playing For Change outfit since before their first live tour and well before they were able to build their first school. What they are doing for humanity, through music (the world's best language) and using the proceeds to improve the lives of kids in 3rd world countries is absolutely amazing! I also had a chance to speak with Mark Johnson at the first New Orleans concert, many years ago, I felt proud to meet and speak with someone who cared so much about so many people he'd never met. If only I could afford to support this foundation...it's just impossible when you live and work at the poverty level.

Review from Guidestar

2 Mikuak R.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I was inspired by Playing For Change Foundation's outreach initiative, Playing For Change Day, in 2011. That year, I helped to facilitate 5 events on PFC Day to raise awareness and money to support PFCF's work. The following year, I had the opportunity to celebrate Playing For Change Day in Washington Square Park (NYC) with other artists, supporters and PFCF staff, where we raised our voices together in song and harmony. It was such an amazing feeling to know that as we were doing this, people around the world were simultaneously engaged in a similar intent of celebrating peace through the power of music. I've been a long-time arts advocate and organizer, and feel that this organization continues to lead by example in drawing attention to the important role that music plays in fostering peace and providing children in under-served places with the environments and resources to discover their own songs and explore their own creativity. What PFCF does is definitely groundbreaking and much needed!

Review from Guidestar