Con­cert sounds per­fect as mu­sic ther­apy fundraiser

Central Leader - - FRONT PAGE - By ALAS­TAIR LYNN

Kiwi mu­si­cians are band­ing to­gether for a wor­thy cause.

The Raukatauri Mu­sic Ther­apy Cen­tre pro­vides ser­vices to chil­dren and young adults with spe­cial needs, but cru­cial fund­ing is needed to con­tinue its work.

With­out any statu­tory fund­ing the cen­tre needs to raise $750,000 a year to cover its op­er­at­ing costs.

Artists in­clud­ing Smash­proof, Stan Walker and Troy Kingi have joined the WA­IATA show­case to help raise the much needed funds.

Or­gan­iser Hinewehi Mohi says she feels priv­i­leged to show­case this lineup.

‘‘We have stunning tal­ent from some of Aotearoa’s finest new voices and from those who have cre­ated our mu­si­cal his­tory,’’ she says.

The cen­tre sees an av­er­age of 200 chil­dren and ado­les­cents come through its doors each week and is look­ing to ex­pand.

It is the only cen­tre in New Zealand pro­vid­ing this kind of mu­sic ther­apy and ex­ec­u­tive direc­tor Carol White says hun­dreds of young peo­ple have seen the pro­gramme’s benefits.

‘‘The benefits of the work we do im­pacts not only on the in­di­vid­ual clients we work with, but also their fam­i­lies, friends, school­mates, and the wider com­mu­ni­ties,’’ she says.

‘‘Many of our spe­cial needs clients are very iso­lated ... [we] pro­vide each and ev­ery one of our clients with an abil­ity to par­tic­i­pate and in­ter­act with their com­mu­nity and to feel pos­i­tive and proud of who they are.’’

The cen­tre also pro­vides 13 mu­sic ther­apy out­reach pro­grammes from Whanga­paraoa to Point Eng­land.

‘‘We are aim­ing to launch pro­grammes in South Auck­land later this year or early next year, but re­quire fur­ther fund­ing sup­port to en­able us to do so,’’ White says.

The WA­IATA show­case has been split into two parts. The first per­for­mances were May 16 and 17 and two fur­ther per­for­mances are sched­uled for May 29 and 30.

‘‘All ticket sale pro­ceeds from the con­certs are be­ing do­nated di­rectly to the cen­tre to help change lives through mu­sic,’’ White says.

Troy Kingi per­forms with Stan Walker on back-up vo­cals at the WA­IATA show­case.

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