The students of Woodbine Junior High School in Toronto were shocked and excited to be visited by a special celebrity guest last February.
The Juno Award winner Serena Ryder, singer of the hit songs, “Stompa” and “What I Wouldn’t Do,” visited the students to promote some exciting news regarding MusiCounts, Canada’s music education charity in association with The Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences. Finding the time in her busy tour rehearsing schedule, Serena decided to show her support for arts education and present the school and its students with a much needed gift.
In addition to performing her catchy songs for the energized kids and faculty, Serena hand delivered $10,000 worth of musical instruments to the school’s music department. This special delivery was part of MusiCounts amazing grant program, which not only helped Woodbine Junior High School, but awarded grants to dozens of other schools in every province and territory across Canada. For the first time since they started collecting funds in 1997, MusiCounts raised over $1,000,000 in grants for music education programs, thanks in large part to the generosity of the Slaight Family Foundation, Canada’s most generous source of support when it comes to the music industry.
“It’s an honour to once again work with MusiCounts,” Serena told the students of Woodbine Junior High School.” Ensuring that music education flourishes in the classroom is a cause near and dear to my heart and I applaud all that they do. Today was a fantastic celebration and congratulations to this year’s Band Aid recipients.”
Melanie Berry, the President and CEO of the Juno Awards and MusiCounts looks back on her 16 incredible years of hard work and explained that reaching the grant’s $1,000,000 mark is “an incredible milestone.”
“These grants have provided hundreds of thousands of students with the opportunity to learn the joy of making music,” Melanie says. “[It’s] an opportunity that they otherwise may have missed out on.”
Ali Slaight, representing the Slaight Family Foundation, takes the podium.