Thursday, June 25, 2009


The past couple of days I've been bringing the books for MYOCA up to date. I have never enjoyed this chore. The picture revealed has always been worrisome. But this time we really needed the final numbers for the fiscal year that ended May 31. As I looked at the reports, my heart lifted. (You can see them here.)

We accomplished a heck of a lot for $53,500*! Most of that was spent on paying teachers: $48,700. But we got a lot of teaching done. Last summer we taught over 500 students, teaching at 2 camps, three Scrollworks locations, plus the ensembles. Over the school year we taught 4 days a week at Hill and NorthStar, the weekend Scrollworks free lessons, plus the orchestras on Sunday and Monday. Of course, many people worked many volunteer hours to make this possible: Nick and Harry last summer. Craig, Jimmy and Dwight this year. Me all the time. And there are many others who donate time: Elena, Claudia, Jessica, William, Jordan, Ben. . . for which we are very grateful.

My total donation to MYOCA for this past year is half the previous year, which means we found other resources--also an exciting and necessary trend.

For the current fiscal year, we'd like to double this budget. (See it here.) Why, when we've accomplished so much on so little over the past two years? For one thing, the staff needs to be compensated on some level in order to sustain their involvement. For another, we need to have the funds to buy and maintain instruments and other equipment. Also, the organization needs to cover expenses that I am paying out of pocket, like the Scrollworks phone and instrument transportation. But mostly, we'd like to serve even more students--and do a better job. Right now we are teaching over 300 students per week at Camp NorthStar, the two Scrollworks locations, and the ensembles. We are finalizing the plans for the fall.

Doubling the budget means bringing in about $10,000 per month, on average. There are many that have serious doubts we can manage this. It will definitely be a challenge. But I am very encouraged by June's numbers: almost $8,500! (A huge thank you to all of those who donated to get us there!) And next month, we will have the $10,000 BACC grant coming in. We CAN do this.

This is so exciting to me. You all know how passionate I am about what we can accomplish through our programs. We saw the musical success at the concert on May 29. Making it happen isn't easy on any level. It is so good to see the organization becoming viable, growing, and thriving.

*after subtracting out Barrage ticket sales, which all went back to the BJCC and Barrage


Geejay Arriola said...

Wow, Jeane, is this the program you wrote about in the comment section of my site (musicanthology)? You sure seem to be doing great work here. May your tribe increase.

Jeane Goforth said...

Indeed, this is the program.
If you want more inspiration from El Sistema and similar programs, read Talya's paper here:
She's applying to be an Abreu fellow at the New England Conservatory.

Janice said...

Your dedication to MYOCA is amazing. Keep up the good work and all the best!

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