Phoenix nonprofit offers free music lessons for kids

A Phoenix nonprofit built on music is accepting new students.

There's no catch. It's free to learn, to play and to take lessons - but the nonprofit says the most important part isn't learning the instrument.

"They treat me like family, and I felt like I belonged somewhere, and it was really great," said Omarari Fuertebances, who plays the piano.

Fuertebances started at Rosie's House at just 5 years old. It's a nonprofit bringing music to those who can't afford it.

"It teaches life skills," she said. "It teaches how to be responsible, teaches how to be disciplined, it teaches how to set goals - so music is really a powerful tool for personal development."

It's free to learn, and students don't have to pay to have an instrument loaned to them.

"Through music, we want to support children to explore their creative and full potential," said Marvin Scott with Rosie's House.

There's over 500 students. Later this month, they'll have a showcase of their hard work.

Students have learned all types of music using all types of instruments, and the nonprofit is ready to teach some new fresh faces for the next school year.

Becky Ballard, the organization's CEO, says music is important to help students grow.

"From that very start when they get their, let's say, violin, and it's squeaky, and its hard, and they're really having a hard time getting those first notes to sound good…they stick it out," said Ballard. "They're with us for years working on that craft and by the time they graduate Rosie's House at 18, they can perform beautifully.

"They have confidence in their musicality, and they've grown as young people," Ballard said.

Learn more about their showcase and how to apply: https://rosieshouse.org/

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A teacher provides guitar lessons to students at Rosie's House in Phoenix.

A teacher provides guitar lessons to students at Rosie's House in Phoenix.