NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – To tell the full story of the Cleveland Park Boys & Girls Club, you must go inside, you must open your mind and ears to the notes you’ll hear and the young lives making these sounds.
“You’re a model for them showing them the right things to do, what not to do,” says Herb Myers, the Boys & Girls Club director.
The music is an opportunity, and the studio in Cleveland Park the canvas for a community of young people to thrive.
“Once we get a youth, a teenager into this facility, they’re hooked,” says Dan Jernigan, the President and CEO of the Boys & Girls Club of Middle Tennessee. “Victory is then in reach for that child.”
It’s a music program called Notes for Notes. The studio is one of three in Nashville where instruments are new tools to compete with gangs, and crime, and the other influences luring away young people
“Not only will we provide them with an opportunity to learn, we provide hope and opportunity. That’s what this studio does for the young people who come through our clubs,” Jernigan says.
The kids come everyday, bused in by the club or Metro Schools. They’re taught how to write, play and record, and the equipment to do it is top notch.
“I know growing up I didn’t have that opportunity,” says Myers.
Myers grew up 15 minutes from the center. Today he uses his role to connect with the kids before the negative creeps in.
“It’s all about getting them on the right track at the beginning,” he says. “You instill all the positives early, it’s kind of like a race car track, they just keep going and going from there on.”
The instruments may not be perfectly played, but remember finding the beauty in the sound may take a second listen to notice that series of notes becoming a song.
Each lyric is a lesson and the chance for every child to choose their most promising path.
Initially, on average only 12 children came to the club on a daily basis. The Notes for Notes studio has now attracted upwards of 140 kids per day, attending after school programs.