Abraham Lincoln High School music teacher Tom Force wanted to increase the number of instruments in his department, so he wrote a proposal on the DonorsChoose.org website.
The online charity welcomes classroom project requests from public and charter school teachers across the country. Members of the public can give a tax-deductible contribution of any amount.
Force requested $500 for new guitars. His proposal coincided with the Christmas season, and some acquaintances made that their present for him, helping him to reach his funding goal.
Once DonorsChoose.org received $500 from supporters of the proposal, it purchased and sent 10 Rogue brand guitars to Lincoln. The shipment was welcome, as the school didn’t have any other guitars.
“You can teach a class a lot easier if the students have an instrument in their hands,” Force said.
Meanwhile, Mayfair resident Donny Smith noticed Force’s proposal on the community website EveryBlock.com. Smith e-mailed principal Donald Anticoli, who put him in touch with Force.
Force isn’t sure how the proposal made it on to EveryBlock.com, but Smith relayed the information to his fellow board members at the Pennypack Park Music Festival.
“That’s exactly what our mission statement is,” Smith said of the board’s goal to increase music offerings in schools. “I took it to the board, and here we are.”
On Feb. 25, Smith and board members delivered 10 guitars to Lincoln’s music room.
Now, Force has 20 guitars, and will keep looking for more, including for his newly formed after-school guitar club.
“We can have up to 33 students in class, and my goal is to have 33 guitars,” he said.
Norm Jadczak, president of the festival board, joined in the presentation. Other board members are Lonnie Goldiner, Glenn Devitt, Bob Finegan, Lisa Greco, Steve Hartzell, Jerry Lathrop, Harry Fritsch and Janet Tagliavia.
As part of the 2013 festival, the Lincoln jazz band will perform on May 15. The Father Judge jazz band and drum line will entertain at the May 8 kickoff. ••
Reporter Tom Waring can be reached at 215-354-3034 or firstname.lastname@example.org