What We Do - Our Mission & Programs

PING! believes that participation in the arts is an essential and fundamental part of a child’s educational experience that should be available to all students,regardless of family income.

PING! opens the doors to music education by providing musical instruments and music enrichment to families in need in Oak Park and River Forest working in collaboration with public school districts 90, 97 and 200.


To do this we provide:

Instruments

PING! loans students a band or orchestra instrument for an annual administrative fee of $20.  Our inventory contains over 200 instruments, built largely through individual donations.  Students typically receive their first instrument choice whether it is saxophone, cello, violin, trombone, flute, or percussion.

Mentoring and Enrichment

Twice a month, Oak Park and River Forest High School advanced music students volunteer to mentor younger PING! middle school students who play the same instrument.  Students pair together for individual private lessons and take trips to high school concerts and theater productions together.

PING! organizes music workshops for 4th and 5th graders. Students receive a private lesson with a high school mentor and then participate in a music workshop, like African drumming.

Music Scholarships

Each year PING! provides scholarships to summer music camps in Michigan, Wisconsin, and Illinois.  Summer music camps provide an excellent opportunity for students to improve mastery of their instruments, strengthen their musical ability, develop independence, and explore a new environment.

When students reach high school, PING! supports their continued commitment to music education and performance with the opportunity to apply for scholarships for private music lessons from professionals.

Family Connections

PING! believes our programming is enhanced when we understand the needs of our students.  We also believe that parental involvement contributes to student success.  Therefore, PING! provides opportunities for communication and participation by parents in our programming.  We invite parents to events throughout the year and have meetings for parents to network with each other and learn about our programs.