Harmony & Healing commenced operations in January of 2019. It took a while to learn the ins and outs of the requirements to bring our mission forward.
We quickly learned there was a lot more we needed to do than be able to sing, play the guitar, and show up at a hospital. Volunteer training, vaccinations, health status, rules and regulations, and negotiations with facilities and staff were all required to get our foot in the door.
Hospitals are keenly focused on being safe and healing places. We needed to learn how to deliver the healing power of music safely and appropriately to the most fragile among us.
Our first Harmony & Healing visit was on Valentine’s Day 2019 at Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital, now Stanford Children’s Hospital. The response to the visit was immediate and magical. Patients and their parents came into the hospital’s broadcast studio, and the lively group was delighted to enjoy the live, acoustic music. We knew that our mission could be achieved.
Much of 2019 was dedicated to getting the word out and literally getting our foot in the door with many hospitals. Each hospital had its own set of qualifications we needed to meet.
We also met with dozens of Rotary Clubs, Lion’s Clubs, cancer support groups, and other civic organizations to tell them what we do and give them a sample of the services we provide.
Harmony & Healing visit to the Tri-Valley Rotary Night Owls Club
This outreach led to many patient visits, including Doctor’s Hospital in Modesto, San Ramon Regional Hospital, Palo Alto Ronald McDonald House, and Lucile Packard Hospital. We also knocked on many hospital doors, many of which disappointingly never opened. We did a few additional musical visits, and by December of 2019, we were poised to grow quickly.
As we all know in December of 2019, the Covid-19 virus first hit. Initially, Covid-19’s rapid appearance would be a huge impediment to our ability to deliver on our mission.
March 2020 brought Harmony & Healing’s original mission to a disappointing stop. We were blocked from entering hospitals and stymied from providing any services to the growing number of patients in desperate need of some uplift. Words cannot express how we felt. Just as we got all of our ducks in a row and were ready to deliver on our mission, everything got locked down. We could not enter hospitals, even to see sick family members.
We did not give up. In April 2020, we received our first grant of funding. Before this, all of our expenses were being covered by David Victor. The Rotarian Foundation of Livermore gave us $3,750.00. After the shock of the covid pandemic and the resulting lockdown, this fantastic grant gave us renewed optimism.
Our H&H Live show led us to the idea of transforming our in-person hospital visits to virtual patient visits online, typically via Zoom, Facetime, or Google Meet.
David Victor performed our first virtual patient visit in August of 2020 and it immediately became clear that this was a method to deliver on our mission that would allow us to scale our services and fulfill our mission in a much more significant way.
While Covid-19 was devastating to our ability to fulfill our original mission, it was also a considerable impediment to expanding our efforts. In-person hospital visits required many steps to set up even before Covid hit and became impossible to secure afterwards. Fundraising event activities ground to a halt.
To help combat the loneliness and isolation felt by so many of us during the early pandemic, we launched our Harmony & Healing Live Shows series on Facebook and produced over 90 shows, with growing audience attendance. Some of the artists that appeared on these shows include: Chuck Wright, Jill Marie Burke, Roby Duron, Glenn Jost, Victor Bender, Aaron Samson, Jordyn Foley and Eric Barnett.
Naturally, these live shows did not compensate for our inability to deliver on our specific mission: to bring live, expertly performed music to patients and their loved ones. We could not effectively quantify the patient attendees to the live shows.
Our H&H Live Shows did provide value. While doing these shows, we developed the methods required to do effective virtual visits with patients during the live shows.
November 6, 2021 was the date of our Inaugural Benefit Concert and Fundraiser. Initially planned for March 2020, the concert was one of the many activities into which Covid-19 threw a large monkey-wrench. The event was rescheduled twice. As they say, the third time was indeed a charm. After all the false starts, delays, mask requirements, vaccination status requirements, social distancing, inability to have certain activities occur in the theater venue, and much more, we are happy to announce that our first Benefit Concert was a resounding success.
Ultimately we sold 560 tickets, and due to Covid concerns, mask, and vaccination requirements, we had 98 refunds netting a total of $32,107 for H&H from the show. Our Fundraising Activities grossed $24,514.00 For a total Gross Revenue from the event of $56,621. After all expenses, the Benefit Concert netted $35,247.00. We had 25 donors of auction items, 17 sponsors, 490 attendees, and a lot of love and fun for everyone!
The Covid pandemic has lasted far too long with significance felt well into 2022, but its experience taught us much and provided us with a valuable lesson for our future. And while our original plan was to visit patients in person, Harmony & Healing has changed how we deliver our services and how we recruit other professional musicians to the benefit of our mission.
Harmony & Healing can now serve via Zoom, FaceTime, Google Meet, or any remote system to which a patient and loved ones have access. Now anyone, anywhere with an internet connection can receive a Harmony & Healing “Virtual Visit,” and we can even provide a recording of the event for posterity.
We are poised to grow, and are now discussing with Telehealth providers how they can partner with our services to augment their care offerings and improve patient outcomes.
Despite the challenges of the pandemic, we have demonstrated how Harmony & Healing visits, either in person or virtually, lift spirits and take patients’ and families’ minds off their challenges with music. Music lowers stress levels, brings about positive associations, speeds healing, and brings happiness to patients’ lives and the lives of their loved ones.
Along this journey, we discovered how we could scale our mission to help the most fragile among us beyond the geographic limitations of our artists’ physical locations. Now we can expand our mission and bring these vital benefits to many more of those in need.
Founded in January 2019, Harmony & Healing is a hospital and healthcare facility music charity and an IRS-recognized 501(c)(3) charitable organization founded by San Ramon resident and former BOSTON band member David Victor.
Our EIN is 83-3162389, and our mailing address: HARMONY & HEALING, 11040 Bollinger Canyon Road Suite E-938, San Ramon, CA 94582. Our phone number is: 925-364-4517
From Inception through December 31, 2020, Harmony and Healing has raised $87,686.80 through grants, donations, charitable events, and other fundraising activities. Total Operating Expenses for the period were $27,157.62, and we had a balance available of $60,529.18 to continue our mission. Funding to date has helped us continue outreach to donors, potential participating artists, patients and families, and healthcare facilities.
We have conducted well over 100 visits, individual patient interactions, outreach and fundraising events, engaged with multiple artists, and developed our infrastructure. We have revised our delivery platform to accommodate the Covid pandemic and developed an expanded mission as a result. We feel that we have accomplished much and are well prepared to continue to expand our reach and mission in 2022.
The concept of virtual visits solved many logistical issues inherent in in-person patient visits. Vaccination status, disease, immunization history, geographic location of the performing artists, available time frames, and more made the logistics of arranging the in-person visits challenging. The ability to deliver virtual visits changes these dynamics and still provides a very positive experience for patients and their families.
For touring musicians, the virtuality of the performance allows them significantly more flexibility in time and location. Our performing artists can do their visits from their dressing room, hotel room, home studio, or “virtually” any location. This flexibility opens the artist to much higher availability and less time lost due to travel. As a result our visiting artists see how easily they can give back their talents to those who can benefit the most.
As a result of this breakthrough, this year, H&H is focused on expanding the ranks of our Performing Artists, engaging with National Telehealth providers to offer our services as an adjunct to the services they already provide in healthcare facilities, expanding the genres of music offered and expanding our reach nationally.
We will have our Second Annual Harmony and Healing Benefit Concert on November 5th, 2022. We are enlisting the help of some of our friends in the music industry to provide a bigger and better show. We plan for a dynamic, action-packed, musical, and fundraising extravaganza.
Don’t miss this date. This will be a must-attend evening of food, fundraising, song, and spirit! You will hear from some of our Performing Artists, patients, and families, what the Harmony & Healing experience means to them, raise your voices in support of the sick and infirm, the most fragile among us, and celebrate our mission with some of the finest performing musicians we know. This is what Harmony & Healing is all about.
Thank you for living this mission with us!