Sing for Hope and El Sistema Greece Bring Creative Hope for Refugees

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Sing for Hope recently received our second six-figure grant from a Europe-based foundation to replicate our programming overseas, with a focus on the creative arts as a tool for migration integration.

Last month, we launched our first pilot program with SFH Pianos serving refugee camp populations and local communities in and around Athens, in partnership with El Sistema Greece.

Early reports have focused on two things. Firstly, in the words of Athens-based program director Anis Barnat, people are visibly moved by the quality of the artwork and the “illuminating effect” it has on the communal rooms. Secondly, reports attest to the excitement of children when they see and play the pianos, and how they stay for longer times in the communal rooms as a result.

Sing for Hope is grateful for the opportunity to work with our wonderful partners at El Sistema Greece to co-create arts programming that addresses migration integration, a key crisis of our era. Piloting the program in Athens, the oldest still-inhabited city in Europe, feels particularly apt. The ancient Greeks promoted the concept of catharsis, of coming together through the arts for emotional release. This idea was central to their concept of well-being. By helping us move past trauma and find our commonality, the arts cultivate our collective soul.

Read more in major Greek publication Parallaxi Magazine‘s early coverage of the partnership.

Sincere thanks to all of our partners, donors, and volunteers for joining us on this journey, and more updates soon!

“Raya / Ράγια,” the Sing for Hope Piano by Jordy Lievers Eaton

Members of the Sing for Hope and El Sistema teams

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    (Dr. Haruhisa Handa, Chairman, Sing for Hope Global Patron)
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Sing for Hope is supported, in part, by the National Endowment for the Arts, the New York State Council on the Arts with support of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, and by the Fan Fox and Leslie R. Samuels Foundation.

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