Saturday, May 19, 2012
NAAF and GiGi’s Playhouse “Hear the Music” Together
“HEAR the MUSIC”
Message From the Founder
On May 1st 2012, The Nathaniel Anthony Ayers Foundation launched our newest program, Hear the Music, at GiGi’s Playhouse. Andrea Johnson, a certified and licensed therapist who specializes in working with Down Syndrome children, is one of NAAF’s musical therapists working with our program. GiGi’s mission is to increase positive awareness of Down Syndrome through national campaigns, educational programs, and by empowering individuals with Down syndrome, their families and the community. They are doing a fine job fulfilling their mission.
Even though our organizations work with different populations, we have one commonality, STIGMA! Our partnership with GiGi’s playhouse was a natural one because both of our organizations are working very hard to spread a positive message regarding the populations that we serve.
We had a great time sharing Hear the Music with GiGi’s parents and children! What really blessed me was to see that even though one child may have down syndrome, all members of the family participated in the program. The families seem to understand it is a family affair. This is a lesson we must learn with mental illness. It includes everyone.
As I observed the interaction of the children with Andrea, I noticed the faces of the parents who really seemed to be totally engaged with their children enjoying the moment. It made me very emotional. It is what I hope for many families: interaction, understanding, and opportunity.
This was a moment of validation and hope for our Hear the Music program. This is just the beginning for all the populations we can reach with musical therapy.
The Nathaniel Anthony Ayers Foundation wants all to “HEAR the MUSIC.”
To donate to the Hear the Music program, click here.
Thank You for your support,
Andrea Johnson, Music Therapist, interacting with children and parents as she reads them a story to encourage participation.
Andrea Johnson, Music Therapist, leads the group in a song.
Andrea with her little helper.
Andrea Johnson, Music Therapist, all smiles and readly to lead the families at GiGi’s Playhouse with a little music therapy!
Andrea Johnson, Music Therapist
Andrea leading a song involving a tug-o’-war activity
Founder and Executive Director, Jennifer Ayers-Moore, along with Dr. Shondrika Moss-Bouldin, Artistic Director of The Nathaniel Anthony Ayers Foundation
Adrienne Mulligan, GiGi’s Atlanta owner, with her daughter; Jennifer Ayers-Moore, the NAAF Founder/Executive Director; and Andrea Johnson, Music Therapist