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Honoring voice and choice for all
Honoring voice and choice for all
Dear Friend, 
Jaylen, a student in one of Upstream Arts’ classes, doesn’t use his voice or his body in a traditional way. But he does have an opinion and something to say, if given the right tools. Earlier this week, we were facilitating a favorite activity of ours, Rhythm Orchestra. It's just what it sounds like - layering sounds from percussion instruments, following the lead of a conductor, to make a collaborative sound.
Jaylen is not able to hold a mallet or hit a drum hard enough for his sound, his voice, to be heard. But one of our Teaching Artists brought an iPad with a drum app to Jaylen, and with his fingers, and through the app, he played the drums on cue and with his classmates. His joy of camaraderie was apparent. 
This isn’t just a story about someone getting the opportunity to play music, or to participate in the arts. This is a story about someone joining in. It’s a story about getting to practice being a friend. And it's a story about finding and sharing our voice in a way that is most relevant to who we are.
The arts and the language of play are Upstream Arts' tools to practice being social and to share our truest selves. With your investment, we can continue to amplify voice and choice, enriching the social fabric of our communities.
Annually it takes 281 donors, investing at every level, to fulfill our individual donors' commitment of $100,000. We have only $12,489 remaining (nearly the cost of two Upstream Arts programs) to close the current gap before December 31, 2018. Join us in practicing friendship, inclusion, and the myriad ways to express Voice & Choice.

With abundant thanks for all that you do!
Julie, Matt, Bree, and everyone at Upstream Arts
Detail from a multi-color abstract painting
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