HARMONIZE FOR SPEECH
Our primary charity is Harmonize for Speech. Almost all Barbershop Chorus chapters in Ontario donate to this charity and since its inception we have contributed more than $4.5 million to the cause. Our Chorus and our members donate about $7,000 annually.
Harmonize for Speech was started in the 1970s to help children who had speech difficulties from an accident or acquired at birth but it now also provides money to assist adults. Much of the money goes to speech therapy programs province-wide. Some returns locally to buy equipment, books and other resources to improve treatment of speech loss or impairment for people who may have had a stroke, throat cancer, brain damage from car or sport accidents or some other cause.
In fact nearly 90% of Harmonize for Speech money goes to universities, colleges, schools and clinics. Only 1% is used for administration.
We are proud that our Chorus is one of the Ontario District’s largest donors to Harmonize for Speech. Over the years we have donated more than $300,000 and are second or third almost every year in giving from among Ontario’s 30 Chapters.
SING CANADA HARMONY
Our members also support Sing Canada Harmony, a charity that believes that vocal music, particularly four-part a cappella harmony in the Barbershop style, plays a vital role in the development of healthy, creative and responsible members of Canadian society. This belief results in a commitment towards ensuring equal access to vocal music arts for people of all ages, but particularly the children and youth of Canada, and the men and women who facilitate their learning to enrich their lives through singing.
One example of this is the O Ya (Ontario Youth A Cappella) chorus. The O YA CHORUS is a premier Youth A Cappella Chorus very much in demand throughout the province of Ontario. Started in 2009 as the Ontario Contingent of the Cross Canada Chorus they have attained a superior rating at the International Youth Festivals held in Tampa, Florida in 2010, Las Vegas, Nevada 2011 and Tucson, Arizona in 2012.