Pandoracon 2013’s Charity Partner: Melodic Connections

This year Pandoracon has partnered with Melodic Connections, a 501(c)3 that offers music therapy lessons to individuals with special needs in Greater Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky. This year, we’re celebrating five years of helping students with autism and Down Syndrome, and other special learners grow through music therapy!

The organization, which currently has four board-certified music therapists, has grown from serving 30 students in 2009 to attracting more than 200 students in 2012. In addition to attending classes at its studio in Bond Hill, Melodic Connections students have performed at venues all over the city, from the Blue Wisp Jazz Club to the Thompson House to the downtown and Newport libraries. The group even performed during one of the sanctioned events sponsored by the World Choir Games last summer!

According to the American Music Therapy Association:

“Research supports connections between speech and singing, rhythm and motor behavior, memory for song and memory for academic material, and overall ability of preferred music to enhance mood, attention, and behavior to optimize the student’s ability to learn and interact. Rhythmic movement helps develop gross motor skills (mobility, agility, balance, coordination) as well as respiration patterns and muscular relaxation. Because music is reinforcing, it can be used to motivate movements or structure exercises that are prescribed in physical rehabilitation. Involvement in music may provide a distraction from the pain, discomfort, and anxiety often associated with some physical disabilities.”

Melodic Connections is doing its part to make this type of research a reality for its students and we hope that you’ll help us continue to fund the great work in which our music therapists are engaged.

“We’re extremely grateful to The Pandora Society for helping us raise money so that we can continue the work that we’re doing throughout Greater Cincinnati,” says Betsey Zenk Nuseibeh, executive director of Melodic Connections. “These types of partnerships show us why community involvement is so very important. The Pandora Society and every Pandoracon attendee who buys a charity raffle ticket is contributing to the educational and artistic lives of our students, and to the health of the community as a whole.”

“Pandoracon is a fun and exciting event that gives us a chance to showcase the benefits of Melodic Connections to an entirely new audience within the Greater Cincinnati community,” says Tricia Ettinger, Melodic Connections’ board president. “We’re glad that groups like The Pandora Society are willing to help little organizations like ours succeed through this kind of sponsorship.”

Learn more about Melodic Connections by visiting their website.

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