Music for Haiti is a project that was started in 2012 that has helped supply and deliver instruments to St. Vincent’s for the past five years. During this time, the students of St. Vincent’s have been gifted 21 violins, 6 violas, 6 cellos, 1 keyboard, 1 flute, 1 oboe, 2 clarinets, 1 bassoon, 2 French horns, and 12 recorders for a total of forty-nine instruments. These were all generously donated and then hand transported to Haiti by numerous visiting groups.
Dr. Josie Stein is a violinist who lived and volunteered, teaching violin and music lessons, at St. Vincent’s for an extended period of time in 1970. She began Music for Haiti to spur interest and growth in a music department for St. Vincent’s School. This past week during her first trip back to Haiti since that stay in 1970, she even brought her own childhood violin with her as a gift for the music students of St. Vincent’s.
Through her numerous and committed fundraising efforts, she has raised the money to pay for teachers to conduct lessons for the students after school. The previous school site in downtown Port-au-Prince will serve as the location for the music school.
St. Vincent’s has always loved sharing the gift of music. The Cloche de St. Vincent’s, the handbell choir composed entirely of blind students and former students, performs concerts regularly, teacher Jimmy plays his accordion during weekly chapel services, and student-resident Jean Marc can often be heard practicing his trumpet after school. This organized music program will enable any interested students to participate in learning the many valuable skills that mastering a musical instrument provides.