Annual music festival to benefit Austin foster children, musicians

The Dripping Springs Songwriters Festival will once again donate festival proceeds to Kids in a New Groove, an Austin-area nonprofit. 

The mission of Kids in a New Groove is to provide youth in foster care in Central Texas with a committed one-on-one mentoring relationship through weekly private music instruction, giving students the ability to build concrete strategies for lifelong success. 

Because youth in foster care are frequently moved between homes and placements, they aren’t able to participate in regular after-school programs that most children have access to.

The program takes into account the frequency foster children are moved from home-to-home, as well as the lack of reliable transportation. But organizers also realize the “overwhelmingly positive impact of mentorship” and artistic opportunities.

Music mentors travel to the students’ homes and teach them through their various placements, no matter how many times they may be moved.

This provides the children with an important, consistent positive relationship, one of the few they are able to cultivate while in foster care. This mentoring relationship gives the support that allows for the students to not only affect positive changes in their lives through music, but they also learn that they can break out of the pattern that follows youth in foster care.

Jim and Laurie Halfpenny, along with Dave Niemeyer, organizers of the Dripping Springs Songwriters Festival, have pledged to continue their support, both with cash and musical instrument donations. They hope that by associating the charity with the Festival that it will shed more light and encourage public response to the incredible work that Kids in a New Groove is doing.

Get involved

To learn more about Kids in a New Groove, to volunteer as a mentor or to make a donation please visit their website at, and to get more information about the October 20-22, 2017 Dripping Springs Songwriters Festival please visit

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