Saved by the Music

August 6, 2009 The program, called P.A.U.S.E., which stands for Positive Action Using Self Expression, helps Chicago's inner-city schools – those that have been hardest hit by budget cuts and lack of resources – benefit from music instruction through afterschool support programs.

It's all about keeping kids focused and keeping them off the streets! And, CPS students can use all the help they can get with afterschool programs.

The founder of this initiative, Israel Kushnir, has a son, Dan, who is in his late 20s and who is the lead singer in a funk-hop band called Swamphouse, based in LA, who grew up with a very troubled youth. Israel and Dan both believe that music saved Dan's life. In fact, Israel gave his son the nickname, "Pause" to teach him to pause before possibly engaging in destructive behavior. The band, Swamphouse (, also has members from South Central LA with similar stories of how music saved their lives.

Press Release:


P.A.U.S.E. Initiative Brings Star-Studded Talent Together

To help fill a void in music and arts education created by reduced federal and local government funding, the George S. May Foundation for the Arts will be hosting a fundraiser/silent auction on Aug. 6 from 8 – 12 a.m. at Joe's Bar at 940 W. Weed Street.

"Music inspires so many of our children to reach their highest potential, however budget cuts in inner-city schools often prevent students from learning anything about music," said Israel Kushnir, chairman of the board for the George S. May Foundation for the Arts. "The P.A.U.S.E. initiative, which stands for Positive Action Using Self Expression, gives students direct access to music as an inspiration and vehicle toward higher achievement."

Statistics show that children who play an instrument and learn to read music perform significantly higher than their peers who do not. The P.A.U.S.E. program uses music to bridge the gap between cultures, creating more social awareness, tolerance, respect and appreciation of diversity, Kushnir said.

The event will be hosted by B96 legendary DJ Julian Jumpin' Perez and guests will be able to mingle with other radio personalities, such as Candi of KISS FM, Donnie DeVoe of Power 92, DJ Flipside of B96, and many more.

Donations can be made in advance or at the door for $30, which includes a four-hour open bar and LIVE performances by the L.A.-based funk-hop band Swamphouse, Charlie Love, and Prep School. Silent auction items include a Super Bowl package, a football signed by Chicago Bears Brian Urlacher, a baseball signed by President Barack Obama, Cubs tickets, White Sox box seats tickets, a guitar signed by the Rolling Stones and much more. For more information about this event, visit or contact Paul Rauseo at 847-825-8806 ext. 351.

The George S. May Foundation for the Arts, a 501(c) (3) organization, is a civic and community service extension of the George S. May International Company (GSMIC), a management consulting firm based in Park Ridge, Ill. The P.A.U.S.E. initiative was established by the foundation as a privately funded grant that awards financial assistance to selected programs and organizations that use music-based curriculums as a gateway to personal enrichment, community involvement, cautious decision making, and good citizenship.

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