Local Music Teachers Give Music to the Boys and Girls Town

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COLUMBIA - After five months of hard work, the Show-me Music Club brought music into the Boys and Girls Town of Missouri. The club presented a $5,000 piano as the outcome of their Keys for Kids Project Sunday afternoon.

The Show-me Music club is made up of local music teachers. The teachers sold piano keys for $60 each. After 88 keys and five months, the club presented the shiny new instrument. One teacher, Cara McMillan said she has worked hard to raise the money and even sold a key to her hairdresser. 

McMillan said music is the best form of therapy, and she is excited to share this therapy with the 53 children and teenagers who live at Columbia's residential campus. "Music is so emotional. You can release a lot of emotions with music. You can feel a lot of emotions with music, maybe there are emotions that you are afraid to feel any other way," she said.

The Boys and Girls Town is a not-for-profit residential treatment program for abused and neglected children and teenagers. Julie Dorn, the director of advancement, said the piano is going to be greatly utilized, especially with music therapy treatment.

According to Dorn, the campus is licensed to house children from birth up to 21 years of age. But they typically have residents aged six to 18. An average length of stay is about nine to 12 months, but it is different for each individual, she said.

Dorn said the piano will be a huge asset and will be used for entertainment purposes and much more than that.  "We will be able to utilize this piano to work with our children at digging deep inside and hopefully discovering some emotions and moving past some past tragedies," she said.

She said some of the children come to the campus with only a trash bag filled with clothes, so seeing the piano meant a lot to them.