Hear Your Song: empowering kids through songwriting

by | Apr 16, 2021 | Heartivist Of The Week

Daniel Rubins is a musician and heartivist. He founded Hear Your Song, a non-profit organization that empowers children and teens with serious illnesses to make their voices heard through collaborative songwriting.

It all started with a special school experience and a wise teacher.

When Daniel was in 5th grade, his teacher formed a partnership between his class and the children at Elizabeth Seton Pediatric Center in Yonkers, New York. Daniel’s buddy, Melissa, was non-verbal, but they were able to communicate through her aide. The goal of this experience was to give young students the conviction that their buddies were as richly human and deserving of friendship as they were. In high school, Daniel returned to Elizabeth Seton to give a brief piano and sing-along performance: sitting in the front row was Melissa.

This memory and the seeds it planted in Daniel’s heart inspired him to find a way to give voice to kids with complex health needs. Together with Rebecca Brudner, he started Hear Your Song while still a student at Yale University seven years ago.

In live songwriting sessions, Hear Your Song volunteers work with children and teens to guide them through the process of writing their own song lyrics. Then, in collaboration with more volunteers, they set those words to music and record the song to be heard, celebrated, and shared.

“As musicians and artists – especially as collaborative artists engaging in dialogue and truly listening to each other – it is our special responsibility to strive for a common world in which all voices can be heard and every child’s song can be sung.”

Empowering kids through songwritingHear Your Song has active student chapters at Yale University, Smith College, Dartmouth College, and Hunter College High School.  They also maintain hospital, school, and camp partnerships at the national level, as well as collaborations with individual families, that engage the broader volunteer community beyond and among campus-based chapters.

This incredible network of music and kindness has been inordinately impacted by the global COVID-19 pandemic.  In order to be able to continue delivering their program and reach the children hospitalized or isolated at home, Daniel and Rebecca decided to develop a virtual platform. Seed funding from The Pollination Project supported this initiative.

The new web platform will strengthen their partnerships, help establish new ones, and also create opportunities to train and mentor new leaders at their various campus-based chapters. Most of all, it will allow Daniel and his team of volunteers to break through the isolation of many kids facing health challenges, bringing their voices to the surface and opening spaces for creativity and self-expression.

To know more about Hear Your Song and listen to kids’ creations, please visit their website or their YouTube Channel.


🧡 Happy Sunday 🧡 

#kindness #compassion #heartivism
Call for our Spanish speaking followers 👇

🐮🐷🐔🐣 ¡Te invitamos a unirte a la octava edición del Retiro de Meditación para Activistas por los Animales! 🧘🏻‍♀️ Este evento gratuito, dirigido a activistas hispanohablantes, se llevará a cabo los días 4 y 5 de mayo de 2024 a través de Zoom, y estará guiado por nuestro facilitador, Tashi Nyima.

❔ ¿Por qué participar? Sabemos que muchos activistas por los animales enfrentan desafíos emocionales que pueden afectar su capacidad para seguir adelante. 📣🆘

✅ En este retiro, aprenderás valiosas estrategias de autocuidado para fortalecer tu mundo interior y hacer que tu activismo sea más compasivo y efectivo. 🫶🏼✊🏼

INSCRIPCIONES GRATUITAS EN: https://lu.ma/retiromayo2024 

¡Ayúdanos a difundir esta invitación entre tus contactos comprometidos con la causa! 🌱💚

#activistas #animalistas #meditacion #derechosanimales #animalrights #animalactivism #heartivism
🌟 Empowering Through Play! 🌟

Nature Trust (Tamilnadu, India) launched the project, "Enhance the Skills of Children with Disabilities through Play," supported by one of our seed grants 🎉✨ Timed with World Autism Awareness Day 2024, this initiative resonates with the theme of "Empowering the Autistic Voices."

In particular, the grant allowed Nature Trust to provide specially curated play materials to 20 remarkable children with diverse disabilities. These tools were thoughtfully selected to ignite their development and unlock their potential. 🧩🎨

At the distribution event held on March 31st, the atmosphere was filled with joy as children and parents expressed gratitude for the newfound importance of play in their lives. 💖👦👧 The presence of local leaders underscored the significance of inclusive initiatives like this one.

Beyond distribution, Nature Trust volunteers engaged with the children, creating lasting connections and memories. 🤝 

Through the power of play, Nature Trust is fostering a more inclusive world where every child has the opportunity to thrive and reach their full potential. 🌈 

Let's continue spreading joy and empowerment through play! 

#EmpowerThroughPlay #InclusiveCommunities 🌟 
#childrenwithdisabilities #autism #supportchildren #kindness #heartivism #India
It's Volunteer Month! 🌟 🌟 🌟 Today we celebrate our grant advisors working on Economic Development focus area.

By meticulously selecting projects for our seed grants, they're not just funding ideas—they're empowering communities and sparking transformative change. 

Join us in celebrating their invaluable efforts and the positive impact they're creating together!

🔸 Eric Anorrey (Ghana)
🔸 Mariam Nakiryowa (Uganda)
🔸 Jean-Marie Zihalirwa (DRC)
🔸 Emily Logiron Asekon (Kenya)
🔸 Georgia Bernbaum (USA) 
🔸 Herve Tsoala Kuete (Cameroon)
🔸 Jackson Bizimungu (Rwanda)
🔸 Okumu Dickson (Uganda)
🔸 Samuel Litunya (Kenya)


#volunteermonth #volunteer #heartivism #economicdevelopment #change #empoweringcommunities