Little Kids Still Rock


In 2002, David Wish, a Bay Area school teacher, became frustrated about the state of music education in the public schools and decided to do something about it. He approached the Rex Foundation for a seed grant for what became Little Kids Rock.


School kids learn music they like on donated instruments thanks to the work of Little Kids Rock.

Today Little Kids Rock is rocking right along, and we recently received this note from Wish:

“Back in 2002, I left my job as an elementary school teacher (which I loved) to pursue a dream of bringing free instruments and lessons to low-income kids.  Equipped only with a passion for teaching children and a new, novel approach to teaching music, I founded a nonprofit and named it ‘Little Kids Rock.’ When I thought about who might be interested in supporting the work of our fledgling nonprofit it occurred to me that the Grateful Dead might really enjoy and support the concept.  I looked at their website and, to my delight, I learned of the work of the Rex Foundation.  I applied for support and the Rex Foundation provided us with some of our first financial support. That was a HUGE win for our kids and our program. The funding along with the prestige of being a Rex Foundation Grantee helped us get our initial lift-off.

“In the beginning, when we were just getting started, it was a very small handful of supporters who helped us begin to realize our dreams. The Rex Foundation’s support was instrumental (pun intended) at our inception and remains a source of inspiration and pride to this day. Today, Little Kids Rock is the leading nonprofit provider of direct instrumental music lessons in our public schools. We have served over 85,000 low-income kids in over 1,000 schools. We will always be tremendously grateful to our friends at the Rex Foundation for the kindness and support that you gave to our kids and our program. On behalf of all of us here at Little Kids Rock, our students, our teachers and our staff, I would like to thank you from the bottom of my heart!”