Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Sacramento GNG Publicized In Sacramento Press

On June 21, 2011, the Sacramento Press published the following article:
Sacramento has a new outlet for kids and teens who need a way to boost their self-esteem and gain confidence. The Guitars Not Guns music program has opened a Sacramento chapter and is searching for youth to participate and volunteer teachers.

Guitars Not Guns is an organization that aims to keep at-risk teens from making poor choices that could get them into serious trouble. They do this by enrolling children and teens in guitar lessons taught mostly by community volunteers.

“We want to help teach kids how to play the guitar so they can use it as a creative outlet instead of being involved in self-destructive activities such as gangs, alcohol and drugs,” said Barbara Donabedian, president of the Sacramento chapter. “The kids will gain a sense of accomplishment, responsibility and also confidence from the program. We want to stop youth violence and keep guns out of reach of kids while promoting gun safety.”

The organization is still trying to raise the funds to cover its expenses, but local classes will begin shortly.

“Classes will begin as soon as we finish obtaining the funds to purchase the guitars and to print the lesson books,” said Brittany Snelgrove, Guitar’s Not Guns local vice president. “We have many places to hold the classes that are free.”

Children in between the ages of 8 and 18 are welcome to take classes. Because the organization is still in its preliminary phase of development, parents who would like to enroll their children or teens who wish to enroll themselves can contact the Sacramento chapter directly through the Guitars Not Guns website, through the Facebook page, or by e-mailing

Guitars Not Guns Sacramento is still in need of teachers. There are many ways to help out and volunteer with the organization.

“To be a teacher, you only need to know how to play the guitar,” Donabedian said. “There is no real age restriction or teaching experience needed. People can volunteer to be more than a teacher. They can help with everything from fundraising to PR or even help teachers with lessons.”

In order to spread the word about their cause, Guitars Not Guns Sacramento is reaching out to many venues and local businesses.

“We are looking to go to Second Saturday this summer with a booth to pass out fliers and try to raise donations,” Snelgrove said. “I’m also looking at getting in contact with Ace of Spades to see if they would be interested in getting bands to sign guitars that we purchase. Then we want to auction or raffle them off with all proceeds going to GnG. We are also willing to help promote with any of the sponsors that want to donate or partner with us.”

The Sacramento chapter of Guitars not Guns encompasses the entire greater Sacramento region. The next closest chapter is in San Francisco.

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