Free music program in Jackson County expands

Leaders of a free music education program in Jackson County want to help more kids express them selves creatively
Published: Jul. 28, 2023 at 8:26 PM CDT|Updated: Jul. 28, 2023 at 10:20 PM CDT
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Carbondale, Ill. (KFVS) - Leaders of “Ready 2 Play” in Jackson County, Ill. want to help more kids express themselves creatively.

Volunteer Carolin Harvey said musical creativity is important to kids.

“Music gives youth something to do, it occupies that time that they could be doing things they shouldn’t be doing,” said Harvey.

That’s the reason Ready 2 Play provides free music lessons to kids in Jackson County.

“We are looking for youth to participate in the program but also volunteers for instructors,” said Harvey.

Members of the organization are trying to build the program back up after they experienced a tragic loss.

“We started it and then we had a teacher who passed away suddenly so the program kind of hit a lull,” said Harvey.

Ready 2 Play offers lessons with instruments like violin, piano, and most recently, drums.

Jackson County State’s Attorney Joe Cervantez started the program. He said they wanted those interested in learning music to be able to follow their interests.

“We want to make sure that our kids in our band programs and our school programs when they leave school, they have another mentor, another place to go, another interest to keep them busy to keep them occupied and to allow them to excel,” said Cervantez.

Cervantez also said that the program is funded in a unique way.

“To be able to take forfeitures from drug cases and be able to put those proceeds back into the community where they can do the most good,” said Cervantez.

Carolin Harvey said she just wants kids in the area to continue being creative.

“Music is something that activates the brain and the body at the same time,” said Harvey.

To volunteer or donate, you can reach out to Joe Cervantez’s office at 618-521-9322.