HONOLULU –Helping to rekindle Ala Wai Elementary’s music program, ukulele virtuoso Jake Shimabukuro and the Music For Life Foundation generously donated 40 ukuleles to the school’s students in a ceremony earlier today.
In 2016, Shimabukuro teamed up with the Music For Life Foundation, a non-profit group dedicated to music education, to restore 100 Kamaka ukuleles used by schools by the end of year to commemorate the 100th anniversary of Kamaka Hawaii. 22 restored and repaired models were returned to the school today along with 40 donated ukuleles that students will be able to take home and practice with.
“Ala Wai School is my alma mater and this is where I learned ukulele…and bringing these Kamaka ukuleles back is special because these are the exact same Kamakas I played on when I was a student here,”said Jake Shimabukuro. “Being able to restore them so the next generation can use these ukuleles to learn is the greatest honor. We want to inspire kids to use music as a vehicle, to motivate them to find their passion.”
“We are so thankful to Jake and the Music For Life Foundation for their hard work and generous donations to help restart our music program,”said Principal Michelle DeBusca. “Music is a universal learning opportunity that helps our students to expand their minds and these ukuleles will help them to find their creative voices and expression.”
Various public schools will be working with the Music For Life Foundation to improve music programs and connect with more music teachers, tutors and organizations to help students learn.