There are so many ways to help support Kids’ Orchestra – through being a teacher or site staff member, time as a volunteer, or monetary donations. Today, we follow the path of support of one of our new Administrative Team members: Erica LeJeune.
Erica LeJeune started out as a parent of a Kids’ Orchestra student in 2013. After 3 years, she decided to become a Site Coordinator to support her children and the program.
“As a parent, I would stay in the waiting area for my children. I was able to witness all the work, love and care the coordinators and teachers put into their jobs and the children. I wanted my children to be a part of that atmosphere and so did I.”
This fall, Erica was promoted to the position of Program Manager in the Kids’ Orchestra administrative office.
“It seems so ironic that I was googling six years ago, looking for a music program for my girls and now I’m working for the same organization as program manager. So I think, in a real spiritual way, I was meant to be here from the very beginning.”
We took a brief sit-down with Erica to discuss why Kids’ Orchestra. She had this to say.
“I believe Kids’ Orchestra is much bigger than an after-school program. Kids’ Orchestra is a way to bring children and communities together. It is important to me that every child has a chance to play and experience life with other children who don’t look like them. I believe it is important that every child interacts with children from other racial and cultural groups. We all need to see life through other lenses besides our own.
My oldest child was very shy. I hoped that she would meet new friends and come out of her shell. My youngest child stuttered since age 3. I was praying that her experience with Kids’ Orchestra would give her more confidence and hopefully she would find her voice through music. I can say now that Kids’ Orchestra can change lives. After being involved in Kids’ Orchestra my daughters are very confident, witty and remarkable middle schoolers. They are both advanced and intermediate band students at Sherwood Middle Magnet and I am One proud Momma.”
Erica has great hopes for the future of Kids’ Orchestra. She is currently working to help broaden our volunteer program and is assisting in starting a PTA next year. She hopes that in the future, Kids’ Orchestra will be able to offer further support to families through hosting job fairs, health and fitness workshops, and becoming a feeder program for the Louisiana Youth Orchestra.