A Few Words About…
Shera Lumsden began her education in Health Information Management and became a nationally registered CHIM Professional in 2009. Her passion for using music as a learning tool for skill development led her to continue her education at Queen’s University where she received her BAH in Music and Psychology and continues her research in Scientifically Based Curriculum Development. Shera is actively involved in research investigating the role music plays in facilitating neuroplasticity and skill development.
Shera began studying piano, flute and theory when she was 11 years old participating in numerous bands including jazz, big band, orchestra and choirs. For the past 15 years, Shera has taught children, youth and adults music theory and instrumentation and worked closely with individuals with special needs using music as a way to facilitate social and developmental skills. Shera received the Kenneth Murray Making a Difference Through Music Award from Queen’s University in 2015 for her musical outreach to her community. She is the founder of MusicMates and is dedicated to developing quality programming that uses music as a tool to facilitate social and skill development opportunities for those experiencing social and special needs.
What people think about MusicMates
MusicMates is a ” YES ” place. They say yes to belonging, inclusion, and dreams. People who have heard the word no in their lives begin to learn a new tune of yes when they enter the door of MusicMates. MusicMates is an organization that provides music to individuals with special needs. It can be a source of stress relief to help calm one person down or be a inspiration of expression to another. As a support professional, I see and witness the effects of MusicMates with the client that I work among. It is always a good day when we have been in the presence of Music Mates.
Kingston is a better place because of this organization.
Yes to MusicMates !
Our son Benjamin has been taking part in the Music Mates program for 2 years. Ben is diagnosed with Autism. Since Ben has had access to this program and the very qualified staff he has grown tremendously! Music Mates does a fantastic job in engaging children and adults in music. As a parent and an observer it’s amazing to watch our kids change and react to the environment the staff create through music. Not only is it therapeutic the staff use music to teach our kids and adults coping strategies, social skills, academics and calming techniques.
- MusicMates is doing good work for good people — people who “come to life” when they engage with music. I know because I play for them. They love music because music brings something out of them that nothing else does.
Our son has been participating in MusicMates for the past three years. This group is run by an exceptional leader, whose creativity, talent and compassion creates a welcoming program for our children.
My son Patrick has been going to MusicMates for a few years now. He loves it and is well supported by the staff there. He needs one on one supervision and the MusicMates staff makes sure he is completely involved in the activities. He has learned to catch the beat, play drums and participate in some dance routines. It is a highlight of his week during the year and the camp in the summer makes him really happy. He also has made some friends there which is not easy for him to do.