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April 30, 2013 > Donate for the bands to play on!

Donate for the bands to play on!

By Miriam G. Mazliach

Music is a universal language that brings people together. In Fremont, that force shines brightly at Fremont Education Foundation's (FEF) annual After School Band Telethon. Helping students to experience the joy of music, FEF, through its annual telethon, raises funds needed to provide school music programs to over 1,000 students in the 4th, 5th and 6th grades, at 27 Fremont elementary schools.

This year, there are a few changes to the fundraiser. Traditionally held over three nights, the telethon has evolved into a one-evening televised event, on Saturday, May 4 from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. Rick Geha and KK Kaneshiro are returning as hosts of the program, airing on Channel 26 and live streamed at

FEF volunteers will also "phone bank" in advance of the telethon, from 12 noon - 3 p.m.

Kim Scott, FEF's After School Band Chairperson says, "We are hoping to develop a more streamlined and simplified fundraising plan that would bring in the $160,000 we need annually" ($30,000 has already been raised this year). She adds, "By changing the telethon to one day, we are reducing the workload for volunteers. The goal is to simplify our processes so that we are more sustainable as a program and as an organization."

According to Scott, as of last year, the After School Band program can no longer charge a registration fee for band. "In the past, we had charged a nominal fee, which supplemented any deficiency in fundraising. We are no longer permitted to do so due to an ACLU settlement regarding free education. Therefore, we must raise every penny for the program through donations and sponsorships. This makes fundraising even more critical," she stated.

During the telethon, a variety of entertainment will be provided - live and taped - for the enjoyment of telethon viewers watching from home. These include in-studio performances by After School Bands from Vallejo Mill, Weibel, Warm Springs, Brookvale and Harvey Green elementary schools. The show will also feature a live performance from the Scout Band, led by an After School Band music instructor including several band members who are also music instructors in the program. Other highlights will be a film of student band performances, as well as interviews with FEF Board members and supporters.

"FEF Board members and community volunteers are helping with the telethon, so it's a real team effort," adds Scott.

To date, generous telethon sponsors include: Wells Fargo, Fremont Bank, Allegro Music, C & L Music, Electrical Contractors Trust of Alameda County and Club Sport.

"I am new to the FEF Board and to the After School Band program," says Scott. "I have two young children and I am excited by the opportunity to help make our community and our schools stronger. I work with a lot of public schools and deeply understand their budget challenges. I believe in music and arts in the schools and believe in our After School Band program." Scott states, "I also believe that communities must invest in our schools, and that is why I chose to step up, join FEF, and help raise money for our band program."

Enrollment in the After School Band program continues to grow each year and this year classes were added to accommodate the large number of students.

Donations are greatly appreciated and can be made at: To volunteer for the telethon, email FEF Board member, Kathy Kimberlin at

Fremont Education Foundation's After School Band Telethon
Saturday, May 4
5 p.m. - 8 p.m.
Channel 26 and
To volunteer:
To donate:

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