On April 28, 2023, Instruments in the Attic (IiA) was able to provide over 100 instruments and accessories to middle and high school students in Wynne, Arkansas. Matthew Cooper, a middle school music teacher in Wynne Schools, reached out to Dr. Samantha Clarke (IiA Coordinator) earlier this academic year seeking instruments for the program. Cooper had learned about and received instruments from IiA in the past when he was teaching in Maryland, so he sought help from the program again in his current job. In the midst of coordinating the details of the instrument pick-up and school needs, the Wynne community faced an unimaginable tragedy: on March 31, their town was struck by a massive tornado. It completely destroyed their high school and half of their town. While they are on a path to recovery, the damages will take at least 2-3 years to rebuild.
Cooper stated, “These instruments could not have come at a better time.” He and his colleague drove from Wynne, Arkansas to Mason Community Arts Academy with a trailer in tow in order to get instruments and supplies back to their students. The donation included band and orchestra instruments, guitars, percussion equipment, and various accessories, and has made it possible for music to continue for the students in Wynne despite the hardships they are facing. Receiving these instruments has allowed the students to attend and perform at Music in the Parks at Magic Springs in Hot Springs, Arkansas, and has allowed the guitar ensemble to remain intact. As Cooper said, “This is going to help us so very much moving forward out of this disaster.”
Instruments in the Attic is always seeking instrument donations so that we can continue to help those in need locally, nationally, and internationally. If you would like to make a donation or to find out more, please visit our page or email us at email@example.com!
Written by Dr. Samantha Clarke
Edited by Regina Schneider