SingPeace! Pilgrimage for Peace & Global Harmony

SingPeace! Pilgrimage

Port Townsend Songlines' June 16 concert benefits Building Futures


6/6/2012 6:00:00 AM
Songlines' June 16 concert benefits Building Futures
Gretchen Sleicher and Laurence Cole, pictured here at their shared property at the Port Townsend EcoVillage, are codirectors of the Songlines community choir. Photo by Maggie Hastings Clifford

Gretchen Sleicher and Laurence Cole, pictured here at their shared property at the Port Townsend EcoVillage, are codirectors of the Songlines community choir. Photo by Maggie Hastings Clifford

Maggie Hastings Clifford
contributor

Songlines is calling forth the Port Townsend community once again to not just join in song, but to raise funds and awareness for a most worthy local organization.

The “Spring Sing” at 7 p.m. on Saturday, June 16 in the downtown Cotton Building benefits YMCA’s Building Futures mentoring program. There is a suggested donation of $12.

Songlines directors Laurence Cole and Gretchen Sleicher chose Building Futures as the beneficiary organization because mentoring programs help to strengthen community and encourage meaningful relationships, they said.

“The Songlines philosophy is about generating connection through song and an enlivened sense of community,” said Cole.

After reading an article about Building Futures in the April 11 edition of the Leader, Sleicher contacted Kim Hammers, director of the program, and knew that she had found the right organization. She hopes the partnership raises more than just funds.

“We were inspired to partner with Building Futures by the desire to support mentoring by making further connections between those that are already involved in the program and the Songlines network. Perhaps people in our network will be inspired to become mentors,” Sleicher said.

In fact, Hammers said, since the publishing of the April 11 article, 10 mentors have stepped up to meet with a mentee, or “buddy,” once a week.

Mentors are interviewed and then placed with a buddy, age 6-11, who they meet with on school property. They can play games, work on homework, create art and more. Current mentors range in age from high school students to retirees. Some matches last until the mentee has finished high school and all of them result in meaningful experiences, Hammers said.

“The magic of the friendship between the two people in a match is a win/win situation,” said Hammers. “The mentee and the mentor benefit gloriously from the partnership. I invite anyone who has the time or talent, and has it in their hearts to be a mentor to step forward. It really is quite transforming for both.”

Kim Hammers and YMCA director Erica Delma plan to attend the June 16 Songlines “Spring Sing” to answer any questions about Building Futures. To hear Sleicher and Cole talk more about the choir and upcoming concert, tune in to KPTZ-FM 91.9 Port Townsend at 12:30 p.m. on Friday, June 8.

All are welcome to join Songlines’ new season in September, and Building Futures is ready for more mentors. Step up to be a mentor or stand in as a member of the choir – both are ways to strengthen the Port Townsend community.

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