Education et Santé
pour les enfants du monde

Music rooms for 200 children in a Oaxaca shantytown

Context:

It was in one of the slums of Oaxaca, at the foot of a landfill, that the Santa Cecilia music school was born in 2011. The initiative came from the children themselves supported by the parish and the community to get away from the violence and dangers of the streets. Today, eleven years later, the school welcomes 150 young people who take music lessons 6 days a week. The most talented pursue training at the conservatory or university. 

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First moments discovering the piano...
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A music ensemble that has changed their lives !

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Location:

The site is south-west of Oaxaca City, a region frequented by tourists. In the shantytown of Vicente Guerrero, at the foot of the giant municipal rubbish tip, that some 14,000 indigenous people live without running water and often without electricity, in tiny shacks of corrugated iron.

Carte Mexique
VicenteGuerrero

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Objectives:

Don du Choeur’s objective is to build music rooms that would allow the youngsters of the shantytown to practise individually and rehearse together in good conditions, allowing twice as many students to take courses.

Open-air rehearsal at Santa Cecilia
Open-air rehearsal at Santa Cecilia
Jesús finds a quiet place to practise his cello
Jesús finds a quiet place to practise his cello (copyright Andréa Mantovani)

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Key Stages:

From 2011: Isabelle de Boves, a French airline pilot, starts collecting used musical instruments which she takes to Oaxaca. She sets up the association La Banda de Musica to help in the development of the school. 

2014 to 2016: Some lock-ups are built to stock the instruments. Two repair workshops (for wind and string instruments) are opened to the public, becoming a source of revenue for the school. 

2017: The community acquires some more land, to allow the school to expand. 

2018: The Don du Choeur committee visits Oaxaca to assess the enlargement project.

2019, 9 May: Don du Choeur fundraising concert at Victoria Hall, Geneva

Back to school 2022 in one of the new large music halls
Back to school 2022 in one of the new large music halls
14 élèves suivent des cours de musique grâce aux bourses DDC !
Thanks to the DDC scholarships, 14 students are following music lessons !














2020: Start of work and construction of two large rehearsal rooms with two storage rooms for musical instruments. 

2021: Work stopped due to Covid. Sale of Mexican masks in Geneva. 

2022:

  • Resumption of work with the expansion of the covered space used for general rehearsals of the orchestra.
  • Charity evening on October 11 to complete the expansion work. 

2023: Construction of rooms that will be used for the individual work of each instrumentalist.

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Partners:

  • Axel Arañó, renowned Mexican architect, will donate his services to the school enlargement project.
  • The French association La Banda de Musica, which has been a partner of Santa Cecilia since 2011.
  • The Fondation Air France is helping to finance the land and a part of the school enlargement costs.
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Isabelle de Boves, airline pilot, has brought in almost 300 instruments
Two youngsters from Santa Cecilia (in purple shirts) were invited to Tokyo to play in the Fukushima symphony orchestra
Two youngsters from Santa Cecilia (in purple shirts) were invited to Tokyo to play in the Fukushima symphony orchestra

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Help us help these children! :

You can help us keep these children of Oaxaca in education, by supporting a concrete action plan that is both needed and targeted

Every donation, large or small, goes straight to the project.

For these kids, music is a source of pride and achievement!
For these kids, music is a source of pride and achievement!
Music has brought life, joy and hope to the children of the shantytown
Music has brought life, joy and hope to the children of the shantytown
Download the flyer of the Santa Cecilia Music School, Oaxaca, Mexico
 

When music saves children

Mayo, one of the young cello players of Santa Cecilia !