Located on the outskirts of Durban’s CBD is 21 Diakonia Avenue, the home of the Durban Music School (DMS). It’s as unlikely a place as any for an institution that teaches children classical music, but that was exactly the idea when the school’s director, Mr Dannewitz, chose to house the school there 15 years ago. The idea was to to bring music to children who would otherwise never get to experience it. An idea that 2014 eThekwini Living Legend, Kim Matthews, has built on. The school has close to 500 learners, with the majority on full scholarships. The curriculum includes weekly lessons in piano, keyboard, guitar and orchestral instruments, and learners are required to take accredited music exams each year, either through Royal Schools or Trinity College. DMS also runs several community outreach programmes, working with the Open Air School, children’s homes in Hammersdale and Newlands East, and a primary school in KwaMashu. Through the good work of the Paw-Paw Foundation DSM has also awarded music bursaries to 100 primary school learners from Inchanga, an area badly affected by Aids . The learners were each given a musical instrument, a music stand, sheet music, two uniforms and shoes. The school also provides them with a meal whenever they have their lessons and gives them a week’s supply of fortified pap and soya mince to take home.

The Durban Music School operates as a non-profit organisation, and is always in need of assistance so that they can carry of trying to change the lives of those most in need. Click here to read more about the amazing work that Kim and her team are doing at the Durban Music School. Perhaps there is something that you or someone you know can do to help them on their incredible journey.