OUR MISSION

Our mission is to encourage youth from all backgrounds and abilities, to see themselves as potential change-makers, engaged in civic participation with a positive vision of the future.

Who We Are

MeMA-Music (Motivate and Encourage Music Appreciation) was founded in 2012 by 20-year music industry executive, Jeanne Warsaw-Gazga, on two basic principles: 

 

  1. A deep conviction that young people have the potential and vision to change the world.
  2. The exploration of socially-conscious music can become the vehicle for self-expression of young people’s values and beliefs.

 

What We Do

MeMA-Music offers schools a collaborative, standards-based, interdisciplinary Arts program. Our global education framework is tailored for teachers to seamlessly integrate art, music, social studies, technology, civics, and social-emotional learning into the daily curriculum for middle and high school students. Our culturally responsive and equitable teaching approach engages students without the use of school textbooks. Students learn from music with messages about social and political illsrace and struggle for equality; political, cultural, and economic social systems; and moral values in a safe environment for students to explore their feelings and have critical discussions about current and national issues concerning social justice

 

MeMA-Music reaches 300-500 students each year from low-income neighborhoods in and around Chicago.

We Get Press

MeMA-Music has been recognized locally by WGN-TV,  WGN-RadioFox TV, DNA-Info, JUF News, WBEZ radio, The Highland Park Landmark and Patch, and BrEpic Communications, for our success in providing schools with unique, creative and engaging programs focusing on real-world issues.

Empowers Youth

We seek to present modern questions and dialogue of what responsibilities we have individually and socially regarding students’ personal growth and education in the 21st-Century. Students learn to cultivate civic skills to speak up and believe what they say matters.  Students learn essential knowledge and skills that include the ability to think critically, solve problems resourcefully, make informed judgments, build a sense of shared responsibility and teamwork, develop empathy skills, appreciate different cultures, and recognize the importance of civic engagement.

Creatively Engages Students

Students learn from music recordings of the most legendary, critically-acclaimed songs of the ’60s and ’70s folk, gospel, R&B, rock, hip-hop and blues recording artists, and watch related video clips connected to inequities, both in the US and around the world, examining how this music played an essential role in generating and sustaining peace and social-movement campaigns.  Current songs that address the same issues and themes are included for comparison and analysis in today’s world. Students critically analyze issues such as race and the struggle for equality; political, cultural, and economic social systems.

Dynamic Culminating Event

The culminating event of the MeMA-Music program requires students to undertake immersive research on a current social issue of their choice, or based on their own life experiences, which in the past has included subjects such as bullying, racial and religious discrimination, gangs, gun control, animal abuse, women’s rights, LGBTQ rights, and suicide, as well as many other topics. Students submit final projects through arts-infused sources including digital media/film, songwriting, spoken word, poetry, dramatic skits, and visual art.

For CPS Schools

FOR CPS (CHICAGO PUBLIC SCHOOLS) EDUCATORS:  Our organization has been selected as highly qualified in the area of arts-integrated curricula.  Vetted by a team of evaluators at CPS Central Office, we are now included in Board Report 13-250080, giving clearance to pre-negotiated in-school arts education services without requiring further approval beyond a task-order. You can see our offerings in your knowledge center by following this link: http://www.cps.edu/strategicsource.