Beamz is an innovative tool that allows users to create and play music simply by touching light beams that trigger different notes, instruments, sounds and visual effects. The system was designed to involve patients in the process of making music, ultimately to increase their engagement and accelerate therapeutic results.
Share Your Blessings, based in Albuquerque, New Mexico, raised money for the project through its collaborative Project Maestro gifting program, which allows everyone — not just patients — to try out the system and see the benefits for themselves.
Since its launch in early 2015, Project Maestro has supported individuals, families, organizations and professionals with music, recreation, education and therapy programs for those with special needs, Ruth Anglin, the charity’s executive director, said in a press release.
“We’ve reached thousands of individuals with special needs, and have received numerous testimonials reporting heartwarming impacts — for instance, children playing the Beamz with an arm they had not used before, individuals playing the Beamz with their eyes because they couldn’t move their body, and many other positive cognitive, sensory, and social and emotional experiences.” Anglin said.
Beamz has been increasingly used in care communities, rehab centers, hospitals, schools and homes by occupational, music and recreational therapists. Music is the main conductor of activities in this approach; the motto is that music touches the soul but it can also sharpen the mind.
Children, elderly patients, people with special needs and disabilities, students and home-bound people can use Beamz, which has been shown to improve attention, concentration, focus, learning capacity, memory, problem solving capacity, reading comprehension and sequencing.
The system has also been shown to help improve endurance, fine motor and gross motor skills, as well as creative expression, decision-making, social skills, interpersonal relating skills, listening, self-confidence, team work and verbal expression, among others.
Recent efforts have focused on schools and nonprofit organizations in Arizona, New Mexico and southern California, said the nonprofit.
“We invite individuals, families and organizations that can benefit from our Project Maestro program to apply for a Beamz donation on our website or to contact us,” said Janice Mollo, CEO of Share Your Blessings. “We also invite everyone who has a heart for those with special needs to consider supporting Share Your Blessings with a donation that allows us to further expand this gifting program.”