June 2021 Newsletter

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Inspiring Hope
June 2021
Director’s Corner: Thank you for continuing with us through the fifteen months of COVID-19!

Congratulations to all graduating high school seniors! We have seen the stories and photos of “rising seniors” in the newsletter issues all year. Now they have risen and are ready to take flight into the world community.

The names you see below represent the finest 17- and 18-year-old persons that I know! Their leadership, dedication, vision, imagination, artistry, and Herculean efforts to make a difference in the nation’s capital area are monuments of hope and inspiration. Please read each name, offer a thankful thought or prayer as each one heads to fine colleges and universities all over the USA. Their presence among us will remain a testament to the goodness and courage of humanity. Now they rise and shine with dreams, ambition, ingenuity and passion to share their hope wherever they are.
Tacy Foundation Graduating Seniors of 2021
  1. Ajeetha Arudchandran

  2. Amber Briscoe

  3. Apurva Choudhary

  4. Jason Daniels

  5. Katie Do

  6. Ethan Fang

  7. Sydney Finch

  8. George Frisbie

  9. Rohil Gaglani 

  10. Pranav Hegde

  11. Joseph Jackson

  12. Andy Jiang

  13. Linfred Kingston

  14. Nikita Lal

  15. Eric Lei

  16. Bojun Li

  1. Ivy Liang

  2. Andrew Lising

  3. Alena Lu

  4. Tsach Mackey

  5. Alexander Misiaszek

  6. Nastaran Moghimi

  7. Candace Moore

  8. Haydn Ng

  9. Nathan Pan

  10. Dhwani Parekh

  11. Danika Perez

  12. Hope Robinson

  13. Matthew Rothman

  14. Anika Seth

  15. Abrar Sheikh

  16. Alexander  Suh

  1. Alexandra Thalberg

  2. Julia Ting

  3. Joshua Toribio

  4. Dennis Tsitsiwu

  5. Amy Tsou

  6. Jasmine Tran

  7. Hana Wang

  8. Seta Whitney

  9. Emily Wu 

  10. Jessica Wu

  11. Alexander Yang

  12. Ian Yu

  13. Michael Yu

  14. Andrew Zhang

  15. Eric Zhang

  16. Austin Zhu

To each graduating senior above, we send a sincere thank you! You have seen the reference to President Obama’s appreciation of our work in all of your recommendation letters for college and scholarships. Here is the text for you to keep in your hearts as you go forward to the next chapter in your book of life. The President sent this thank you message from the White House to the Foundation for music CDs we sent to him and his family during his tenure as President of the United States:

“Thank you for your thoughtful gifts.  Michelle and I appreciate your gracious gesture.

Since my earliest days as a community organizer, I have seen ordinary people achieve extraordinary things when working together. Each of us has a role to play in creating a better world for future generations, and I hope you take pride in your commitment to serving others.

Thank you again for your wonderful gifts.  I wish you all the best.


Barack Obama”

12-year-old earns Presidential Volunteer Service Award for 100+ hours of charitable work


Rockville 6th grader Mario Lara received a President’s Volunteer Service Award for his outstanding charitable work for the Tacy Foundation.

A sixth-grade student first found the Tacy Foundation through Montgomery County’s online volunteer center. Fast forward to nearly a year later, 12-year-old Mario Lara is the recipient of the President’s Volunteer Service Award Program’s Gold Award.

In order to qualify for a PVSA, the volunteer must be at least five years old, must be a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident of the U.S. and must complete eligible service within a 12-month period. The Gold Award, specifically, recognizes 100 or more hours of volunteer service for teens aged 11 to 15, according to the Presidential Service Awards website.

Lara received a personalized certificate recognizing his highest level of achievement: gold, a letter signed by President Joe Biden and a medallion earlier this week.

“I was very, very happy [to receive the PVSA Gold Award] and I’m proud about it too,” said Lara.

Lara, a violinist in the Earle B. Wood Middle School orchestra, kept busy with many volunteer projects for the Tacy Foundation beginning in the summer of 2020. 

“The pandemic gave me more time during school [days] because [classes] were split in a weird fashion,” Lara said of the new block schedule for MCPS students.

During this time, he used his creativity and artistic skills to bring joy to underserved people in the community through handmade greeting cards, crossword puzzles, word searches and drawings. Lara put special effort into his artwork to spread positive messages and incorporate cheerful imagery. He has drawn vintage cars, animals, violins, flowers and seasonal designs.

“I do [consider myself an artist], but I still have more to learn,” said Lara.

Lara said he hopes to continue making greeting cards for senior citizens, veterans and hospital patients in the future, in addition to performing live violin music for senior citizens. Although Lara has not had a chance to participate in live music events with the Tacy Foundation due to the pandemic, he said he has played the violin for two to three years and is looking forward to this opportunity when facilities open to the public again.

Lara said he hopes his experience will encourage his peers to volunteer as well.

“Volunteering is a good act,” said Lara. “You’re giving back to the community.” -- Zoe Bell

Opening of Asbury

In previous years, Asbury Methodist Home served as a hub for young musicians from the Tacy Foundation. On weekends, pianists and other instrumentalists would play various songs for the seniors in that facility. After the performance ended, the pianists would serve the seniors an assortment of food and drinks, ranging from cookies to fruit punch. This last year, however, the COVID-19 pandemic put a hold on Tacy Foundation pianists playing at the Asbury Methodist Home as well as at many other places. 

After the year-long pause, the Asbury Methodist Homes the musical performances have resumed -- albeit in a different setting. On May 16th, youth volunteered to play in an outdoor venue, different from the traditional indoor setting for performances. Though the event was postponed due to thunderstorms, it’s an exciting step for the Tacy Foundation, and one that other facilities are following by opening for live performances.    -- Siddharth Kondam

Response from Murvelle Delpino, 
Activities Director for Wilson Healthcare Center at Asbury Methodist Village in Gaithersburg

April 28, 2021

I never sent this out to you but wanted to tell you what a beautiful gift this book was for our residents! We included these in our Easter baskets.
Thank you so much! What is really neat is that there is a variety of crossword activity.

Regards from Activities!

Urbana High School Students Bring the Tacy Foundation’s Mission to Frederick County

When a high school sophomore realized that the Tacy Foundation was not active in her Frederick County, Maryland hometown, she knew something had to change. That something was the beginning of a new club: Inspiring through Music.

Rebecca Fan, a sophomore at Urbana High School, is the founder and president of Inspiring through Music (ITM). Fan is no stranger to the healing benefits of music, as she plays both piano and violin. Until recently, Fan and other young musicians performed live music at the Frederick Memorial Hospital.
Having volunteered for the Tacy Foundation for the past three years, Fan wanted to bring the Foundation closer to home. She started ITM at Urbana in November 2020.
“I know that in… Montgomery County, there’s a lot of students [who] are really involved in [the] Tacy Foundation, but in Frederick County, not a lot of people know about it so far,” Fan said. “I wish that there were more students who knew about this wonderful organization….”
Now the club has 30 members and holds monthly meetings through Google Meet, a video-communication app. Fan works alongside the club’s leadership team – two vice presidents, a treasurer, a secretary, and a sign-up manager – to organize community service activities.
Vice President Alex Zheng, a sophomore at Urbana High School, said that ITM members record musical performances for a shared YouTube playlist that senior citizens and hospital patients can access. 

Vice President Lucy Cheong, a sophomore at Urbana High School, recognizes the importance of providing music to those who have been hit especially hard by the Covid-19 pandemic.
“I can only imagine how confined [the senior home residents] feel, and I feel that listening to music can make them forget the moment that they’re in and just focus on the sounds and melody and enjoy that moment purely,” said Cheong.
Cheong also referenced the viral video of a former ballet dancer with Alzheimer’s to illustrate how music is not only emotionally moving, but memory-restoring as well. Upon hearing music from Swan Lake, the elderly woman dances in her wheelchair, remembering the choreography from her years as a ballerina.
Similarly, Fan understands the beauty of spreading music to underserved members of a community. Although Fan has been a competitive pianist since she was seven years old, she is well aware that music goes beyond flawless execution.
“As a volunteer for the hospital, I realized that playing perfectly is not everything in a piece,” Fan said. “It’s better to play with passion and play to inspire other people than it is to play without missing one single note.”
For prospective ITM members who are not musically inclined, the club’s doors remain open. ITM also facilitates non-musical activities such as hosting food drives, delivering handmade greeting cards, creating puzzle books and participating in the Tacy Foundation’s Reading Express.

Colorful greeting cards that say "Happy spring," containing positive messages and hand-drawn illustrations of flowers



↑Urbana High School’s Inspiring through Music members created

greeting cards for hospital patients and senior citizens in the Frederick area.

 Urbana High School sophomores organized a donation drive to collect toiletries and accessories for local senior citizens. →

“We’re doing this club to help others through volunteering in many different ways,” Fan said. “It’s totally fine if you don’t know how to play an instrument or don’t have as much experience, because despite our club’s name, there are so many other activities to participate in.”

These activities are an opportunity to earn Student Service Learning (SSL) hours, which Fan said she hopes will encourage new high school students to join ITM. For now, the current sophomores will continue to bring smiles to the faces of Frederick County senior citizens and hospital patients. -- Zoe Bell

Virtual Piano Pal
Hi, My Name Is Sabrina!! I am going to talk about my virtual Piano Pals experience and what I learned from the sessions. Even though I haven't had a Piano Pals experience teaching kids in person, I did learn a lot about how to teach kids and about the techniques for teaching the piano in sessions that take place virtually. I had the first of my two sessions from September to November. We got to choose the time and day of our sessions from two options, and I chose Wednesdays. There were two or three people to manage each Zoom session and two or three kids, sometimes one of whom helped out. The students were usually high schoolers. We also got to play the piano by looking at the website, and we would look at the notes of the song and play it. I will write about specific sessions later.
Spreading Good Feelings Across the Country

Scott Perrin

Executive Director

Shipment to Warehouse:

First Responders Children’s Foundation

1310 Kalamazoo Street

South Haven, Michigan 49090


Dear Mr. Perrin:

With deepest joy and gratitude, we send your families gifts of music for Memorial Day.  There are 1000 USBs of 5 varieties that have been recorded locally. These songs are the children’s and teens’ best efforts to reach out and touch the lives of those who have challenges. The children here know that their songs are going to the First Responders’ Children and their families. And they are so honored to support your organization!

Included in the gifts are boxes of greeting cards, designed by Tacy Foundation kids, signed by many youth volunteers who lend their thoughts and hope to your families.

May the music bring renewed spirit and courage to each recipient for the challenges ahead.

The young performers on these USBs range in age from 10 to 18 years. They live in the Nation’s Capital area. Many of them love playing at the local hospitals and senior’s therapeutic facilities. Should you wish for more USBs, just contact us at the address below.

Charlotte Holliday, Founder and Executive Director

The Tacy Foundation

PO Box 2334

Germantown, MD 20875





Part of one of various inserts that accompanied the CDs sent to the First Responders Children’s Foundation

The Tacy Foundation

Educational Mission: Foster youth development through music, story and mentoring

Philanthropic Mission Empower youth to discover and use their gifts in service to others

Social Mission: Build community partnerships and create intergenerational connections

Whom We Serve




Service members



Economically disadvantaged

Individuals who want to serve


How We Serve (Programs)

Live music concerts

Reading Express

Piano Pals

Composers’ Circle

Music CDs

Musical equipment

Charlotte Holliday, Founder and Executive Director

Matthew D. Scott, Graphic Editor

Michael Favin, Chief Editor

Anika Seth, Chief Teen Editor

Siddharth Kondam, Teen Editor

Ethan Schenker, Teen Editor

Zoë Bell, Alumna and Newsletter Reporter

Donations are appreciated.  Thank you!  

Donate online via PayPal at:  www.tacyfoundation.org.

Or send your donation to: 

The Tacy Foundation 

Box 2334

Germantown, Maryland 20875

Ask Amazonsmile.org to donate a portion of your order to The Tacy Foundation.  The Foundation will receive a small percentage of your purchases.  A very easy way to donate at no additional cost to you!

Copyright © 2021 The Tacy Foundation, All rights reserved.

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