With a mission to enrich the lives of children suffering from illness and hardship, Atlanta music industry professional Josh Rifkind established Songs for Kids in 2007 and took singer/songwriter Brett Dennan to Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta at Scottish Rite to perform. Since then, Songs for Kids Foundation, now a 501(c)3 organization, has expanded integrate musicians year-round into the lives of kids both in and out of children’s hospitals and special needs camps through live interactive concerts, hospital bedside performances and Songs For Kids Records songwriting and recording programs. Presently, the Foundation coordinates more than 1,000 visits by musicians are made to all of the children’s hospitals in Georgia in addition to two hospitals in Los Angeles, CA, one in Spokane, WA and two in Charlotte, NC.
Rifkind’s annual fundraising for the organization began 11 years ago with the first 500 Songs for Kids marathon in Atlanta featuring hundreds of bands and solo artists each performing one of over 500 songs over 12 mights. In 2015, the Songs for Kids Foundation Food + Music Festival debuted and the successful benefit returns to Park Tavern in Atlanta on Feb. 25, 2017. The event features food and drink tastings from more than 25 of Atlanta’s best chefs and restaurants, Songs for Kids artists performing live with kids from the Foundation’s hospital programs, live celebrations of the music of Taylor Swift, Bruce Springsteen and more, special zones filled with kids’ activities and live and silent auctions. Tickets, available here, are $35 through January 8 when ticket prices increase to $45, with tickets for kids 16 and under at $10.
Dates for the Spring 2017 installment of Songs for Kids, which promises to feature more than 1,000 musicians this year, will be announced soon at SongsforKids.org.