The benefits of music in the classroom are well-documented. Research shows that music education stimulates brain activity, promotes collaboration and reduces stress. Plus, kids just enjoy making music. If music isn’t in school, children miss out.

So when Womble Bond Dickinson attorney Gregg Skall saw an award-winning music teacher’s story on the local news, he wanted to help.

Melissa Salguero teaches music at New York City’s P.S. 48, a school in the Bronx serving an impoverished student body. Many of the kids Salguero teaches are homeless. However, her devotion to her students and her ingenuity in the classroom earned her the 2018 Grammy Award’s Teacher of the Year honors.

“When I saw her story, it occurred to me that my family has been in the music instrument business since the 1920s. I thought we could do something to help Melissa and her students,” Skall said.

So Skall reached out to his cousin Richard Berger of Grover/Trophy Musical Products , and he was more than happy to help.

“Richard saw the video and said, ‘Don’t worry about it. I’ll take care of it,’” Skall said.

Grover/Trophy agreed to donate 4,100 recorders to the New York City Public Schools. The donation not only will provide Salguero’s students with their own musical instruments, but also benefit other needy children in the area.

“As a Womble Bond Dickinson lawyer, finding solutions and making connections are big parts of what I do for clients. So putting Richard in touch with Melissa just made a lot of sense to me,” Skall said.

Click here to watch WUSA Wake Up Washington’s news story on Salguero and her award-winning efforts.