Network Initiatives

Jimmy’s YA Story

Jimmy was in the 3rd grade at a Bay Area school in Northern California facing some challenges: he lived in a tough home, he was learning to speak English for the first time, and he was struggling in school. Most pertinent, Jimmy didn’t feel very good about himself and he’d been the target of bullying severe enough to require school intervention.

Young Audiences of Northern California brought a 6-week Taiko Drumming residency to Jimmy’s class. The Taiko master created an environment where there was structure and respect, and high expectations. Even with this structure, Jimmy was the last kid his teacher would have expected to find his place in the gym-turned-studio. But through drumming, Jimmy was able to tap into his leadership qualities and rise to head drummer and confidently lead his classmates on the final day of the residency. His teacher was thrilled with how Jimmy’s progress shifted the dynamic between him and his classmates, and effectively ended the bullying. The residency gave Jimmy the chance to discover his strengths and see himself differently.

- Young Audiences of Northern California

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