How change through music became a reality in Nepal.

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The rainy season has come and gone and as winter sets in, government inaction and the Indian block-aid means two million people are still homeless or living in a makeshift shelter seven months after the earthquake. In Nepal, there is no government aid for the poor. Annual per capita income is $700 USD and only 44% of women and girls are literate.

The PFC Foundation sent a team to provide shelter for families in the most devastated communities. 

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This Masked hero, a true peace soldier, was traveling through the border of India, transporting gasoline that was much needed in the isolated villages. As a landlocked nation, Nepal imports all of its petroleum supplies from India. Roughly 300 fuel trucks enter from India on a normal day, but this has dwindled to a sporadic passage of 5–10 fuel trucks daily since the start of the crisis.

Woman working Nepal

When we arrived in Nepal we encountered so many women who had lost their husbands and homes, leaving them with no shelter for them and their young children. Yet they were so strong, emotionally and physically, handling all the hard labor with pure determination.

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These baskets are much heavier than they look. People use them to carry everything; from hay and mud, to manure and rocks. As we struggled to carry them, the Nepalese people handled with ease, using their flip flops as their all terrain footwear.

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Children cooking nepal

Every day, both men and women, went out to work their crops and help with the construction of the new shelters. The children where often left alone, and the oldest of the siblings, which were usually around 8-10 years old, would take on the role of cooking and watching over the youngest. We were very impressed by the maturity and sense of responsibility they demonstrated.

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As word traveled to nearby communities, more people came to help and shelters quickly came into shape. The selfless motivation and sense of brotherhood were beautiful to witness.

We can’t thank you enough for all the support. We hope to continue these efforts of reconstruction in Nepal and bring positive change to other regions around the world who are in desperate need of help.
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A very special thanks goes out to the Stang family, Trans-Tasman Business Circle and PFCF for bringing such compassion to their world.

One Love,

The Playing For Change Family

 

New Music & Sports Program in Kigali, Rwanda

 

The Playing For Change Foundation is establishing a new music program in Masaka, a village located 15km from capital, Kigali. For the first time, a PFCF program will officially include sports as one of the disciplines. Emmanuel, our young soccer teacher explains that sport is an ideal complement for the education of the kids. This new program will take place at Star School, a primary and secondary school founded a few years ago by Bishop Nathan Amooti in order to provide education to underprivileged children.

We are excited to partner with this amazing school and have the opportunity to introduce music to the students there. Like in many countries in Africa, music is part of daily life, and this was made clear by the students™ talent for singing, dancing and drumming before we even start our program. The idea of the music program is to help them to reach another level and focus on traditional music and dance. Our music teacher Samuel, is one of the best dancers and drummers in the country and has been touring around the world to represent the music and culture of Rwanda. Rwanda is a very special country when compared to other African countries: on the wall of Marjorie’s office (the Star School principal) a paper on the wall sums up the essential values of the nation. Number one : “Speed. A country in a hurry.” Rwanda is also the only African country I have visited where every person on a motorbike wears a helmet and each taxi driver asks you to fasten your seatbelt! Those two example might seem like unimportant details, but in reality they reveal a great deal about the current dynamic and the spirit of the country.

The recent history of Rwanda is absolutely unique. Since the genocide in 1994, which took nearly one million lives, the country is clearly trying to move forward as one and make a difference. This call for unity is why transmitting their ancestral cultural knowledge through music is very important. The music is an essential part of Rwanda’™s identity, and therefore, as we do in our music schools in Mali and Ghana, we are trying to value and support the preservation of the cultural traditions here. We at PFCF believe that understanding one’™s own roots and traditions is a great way to build a better future, adapted to a cultural context.

The program is officially starting in the next two weeks, so stay tuned to learn more about it!

Support the Playing For Change Foundation and help us continue making a difference for the young generations of this planet through music education.

François

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Playing For Change Day 2013

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Music lovers around the world will rally once again to spread peace through music with the Playing For Change Foundation’™s (PFCF) third annual global event on Saturday, September 21, 2013. This year marks a new beginning as Playing For Change partners with the 1Love Foundation for this year’™s event, renaming the event 1Love Playing For Change Day,“ Make Way for the Positive Day. On this day, musicians and fans will gather on stages, street corners, schools, and even watch via live-stream music performances, concerts and events that promote peace and positive social change.

Inspiring the collective audience of both Playing For Change and 1Love, 1Love Playing For Change Day will raise awareness and funds to create lasting change through music for generations of children to come. Proceeds from the event will provide direct support for the Playing For Change Foundation’™s free music education programs that serve children and their communities around the world. 1Love, a foundation started by the Marley family, works to inspire a global community to join together and build a better tomorrow, a philosophy shared by the Playing for Change Foundation that will be realized by bringing music into the lives of young people who might not have access to it otherwise.

People in every corner of the world will be able to participate in this memorable day of music by hosting, attending, or performing at an event on September 21st, 2013. Even those who are unable to physically go to an event will have the opportunity to watch one of the many performances streamed live online.

1Love Playing For Change Day is a unique opportunity to advance the missions of both organizations and forge even greater connections as the world comes together to play for change. The event will build on the success of PFC Day 2012, during which thousands of volunteers hosted over 300 events in 52 countries on 6 continents. Funds raised through the day will support PFCF music programs that give children the opportunity to develop new skills and find personal expression through music.

Anyone interested in participating in 1Love Playing For Change Day can visit www.pfcday.org to create an event and learn more about getting involved in this global day of action.