Washington, D.C. Local Gives Students Gift of Music


November 27, 2013

Washington, D.C. public school students celebrate Local 26’s donation of new musical instruments. Local 26 Business Manager Chuck Graham is at the top left, and President Butch Ramos and Business Agent Violet Carter (bottom) are on the right.

Too often when school boards face budget shortfalls, music education is the first to go.

But for Washington, D.C., students, music in the classroom is alive and well thanks to a donation from Local 26 and CBS EcoMedia.

The $30,000 grant to the non-profit organization Little Kids Rock will train 20 new teachers in music education. The money also goes to paying for upwards of 500 new instruments, including guitars, bass guitars, drums and keyboards.

“Little Kids Rock is so grateful that IBEW Local 26 has chosen to support our kids’ right to rock!” said David Wish, executive director of Little Kids Rock.

On Nov. 21, Local 26 and EcoMedia visited Brightwood Education Campus in Northwest D.C. to deliver some of the instruments and enjoy a student concert.

“Today it seems like kids are often isolated from each other,” said Local 26 Business Manager Chuck Graham. “Music brings them together and helps teaches them the importance of team work.”

Graham says Local 26 does most of electrical construction and maintenance work on D.C. public schools and saw this as an opportunity build upon that relationship.

“It says we care about the community we serve,” he said.

Click here to watch the students perform Rihanna’s “Diamonds.”