Pacific Trails Middle School students perform music for seniors

Stronger Together musicians Emily Osgood, Shaili Sharma, Janet Yang, James Qian, and Jihoo Hyun.
Stronger Together musicians Emily Osgood, Shaili Sharma, Janet Yang, James Qian, and Jihoo Hyun.
(Jean Liu)

On Jan 21, Stronger Together, a student-led club from Pacific Trails Middle School (PTMS) performed music for seniors at Sunrise of Sabre Springs Senior Living.

Being motivated to give back to their local community, five students shared their talents with seniors in various musical instruments.

Janet Yang, an 8th grader, founded the club in 2021 and over 60 students have joined already. The club strives to provide comprehensive support to seniors, young children, and people with special needs.

“The residents have more wisdom and stories to share than you could ever imagine. From stories about classical music to travel to sports, you never know what you might discover.” Janet said. “We want to interact and form strong bonds of friendship with them through music.”

This is the second time the club has visited Sunrise Senior Living. “The residents love them.” Cristina Canida, the activities volunteer coordinator of Sunrise Senior Living, said.

“After watching the seniors clap and smile, I realized just how much of an impact a small act of kindness has on a person. It was really wonderful to be there, and I would do it again,” said Shaili Sharma, an 8th grader, who was one of the volunteers.

Stella Hyun, an 8th grader, has played violin since she was seven years old, recalled that volunteering gave her a sense of community, improved her social skills, and decreased her stress. She expressed that her role “as a volunteer gave me a sense of pride and identity. I felt grateful that I was participating in this heartwarming activity.”

The club members are also coaching special needs people in sports such as skating and swimming, tutoring them in reading and writing, and introducing music to young children. During the pandemic, they used virtual tools to connect with people online. This year, they plan to do more onsite volunteering services.