Power of Music brings joy to the disconnected

OUTSTANDING YOUTH IN PHILANTHROPY: Joseph Kayne

It started with an idea inspired by Joseph Kayne’s grandmother: Enrich the lives of people who are in need through the power of music.

It grew into an official Indian Hill High School student club: The Power of Music.

Now, POM is a fully operational nonprofit organization with an official mission: Enhance the lives of people who are isolated or detached from the broader community – people seeking shelter, people seeking medical care and people in nursing homes – by connecting with them and bringing them the joy of live music performed by high school students.

The student who founded it, Indian Hill High School senior Joseph Kayne, is the Outstanding Youth in Philanthropy for the 2022 National Philanthropy Day.

Joseph Kayne, founder of Power of Music
Joseph Kayne, founder of Power of Music

“My grandma is a 92-year-old living testament to the power of music,” said Kayne. “She spent her life as a professional singer and musician. She taught me to love music and the joy it brings to everyone who listens to and participates in it. She lives alone in New York now, and I will often Facetime with her and sing her songs, bringing her joy and breaking up her time alone. I want to bring that joy to the millions of people in our country who are isolated and feeling lonely. The Power of Music is a vehicle to organize high school students who want to be part of the solution, providing joy and human interaction to our isolated and lonely neighbors through in-person music.”

Kayne’s nomination was supported by Jeff Clark, Indian Hill High School vocal music director and The Power of Music board member, along with leaders of various organizations including Inter Parish Ministry Food Pantry and the Cincinnati Academy of Performing Arts. 

“What Joseph has inspired is quite unique, and it absolutely deserves to be celebrated on this prestigious stage,” said Clark.

The need is greater than ever as larger numbers of people experience social isolation. During the COVID-19 pandemic, POM disseminated video recordings of solos, duets and ensembles. POM has now performed for many nonprofits in-person.

The need is real. Using data from the nationally representative U.S. Health and Retirement study, Perissinotto et al. found that 43 percent of Americans aged 60 and older reported feeling lonely. Studies show that such feelings increase the risk of dementia, heart disease and stroke. Studies show that any communication with people experiencing loneliness is vitally important to their well-being, but live music is even more special. 

National Philanthropy Day 2022

National Philanthropy Day is set aside by the Association of Fundraising Professionals to recognize individuals, organizations and businesses inspiring change through nonprofit organizations. AFP Greater Cincinnati Chapter helps members and nonprofits practice ethical and effective fundraising to improve our community. 

Area nonprofits can nominate exceptional donors, volunteers and friends. Honorees are selected by a diverse committee of AFP stakeholders. Read more about this year’s honorees:

National Philanthropy Day Luncheon:

Nov. 17, 11 a.m.-1 p.m., Music Hall Ballroom

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