City gives $30K to music school

The Sarah McLachlan School of Music is aiming to open programs for Surrey's at-risk youth.

Sarah McLachlan

Surrey is providing $30,000 for the creation of a music program for at-risk children.

The Sarah McLachlan School of Music (SOM) has been working to provide quality music education to Surrey students whom could not otherwise afford it.

On Monday, Surrey council voted to approve a funding request by SOM for $30,000.

“The Sarah McLachlan School of Music will not only be a key cornerstone in the creative heartbeat of our city but it will also be a vital program for our youth – in particular to the young people who would not normally have the opportunity to partake in such programs,” said Mayor Linda Hepner. “That is why the Sarah McLachlan School of Music will be such a welcome addition to Surrey.”

SOM provides professional music instruction at no cost, in a safe and nurturing environment, for at-risk and under-served children and youth.

Funded entirely through private donations, students receive high-quality music instruction in both contemporary and classical traditions, with no previous experience required.

The goal of SOM is to raise $100,000 for the Surrey program’s first year of start-up, with year two programming costs remaining at $100,000 and the number of students in the program doubling.

As the program grows in Surrey, the operating costs will grow at the same rate as the students’ numbers.

SOM receives support from the Sarah McLachlan Foundation that covers its overhead costs, which means that all donations received support the direct costs of providing music education.

For SOM Surrey, all funds raised will be allotted to Surrey only and will be used towards equipment costs and community-specific programming.

SOM Surrey is tentatively set to launch in the spring of 2016 in three schools in Surrey.

Anyone wishing to support SOM Surrey can either donate at  https://www.sarahschoolofmusic.com/donate/ and indicate “Surrey” in the notes or send a cheque noting “Surrey” to their Vancouver address: #200-138 East 7 Ave., Vancouver, B.C. V5T 1M6.