A group of Phish fans mailed an unsolicited check for $1,000 to the Loma Prieta Community Foundation. These funds are intended to assist in recovery from an unfortunate fire incident on Sunday, August 30th, which caused significant damage to the Loma Prieta Elementary School and other structures at the Loma Prieta Community Center, including the loss of musical instruments. While this nominal amount will make only a dent in the challenges faced by this important community learning center, the intent of the grant is to bring more attention to the center’s important programs, help shift the dialogue from damage to recovery, and encourage others to join in supporting the recovery, as well as supporting music education more generally.

These funds come from The Mockingbird Foundation’s Emergency Grants Fund, started in February of 2004 as a three-percent (3%) set-aside from the Foundation’s net proceeds. Disbursements are made to help call attention to the needs of music education programs which have been impaired by environmental damage (such as fires, floods, and hurricanes) or moral outrage (such as vandalism, theft, or political conflict). Awards are made by decision of the Foundation’s board, outside of the normal two-tiered competitive application process used by the Foundation for general grants.

The Mockingbird Foundation is the leading provider of historical information about the band Phish and its music. The Foundation has been operated entirely by volunteer fans of the band, without any salaries or paid staff, since its inception in 1996. It fundraises for music education for children by celebrating the music of Phish, through comprehensive books, innovative recordings, creative donation premiums, and special events for the Phish fan community. With this newest grant, Mockingbird has made 261 grants totalling more than $843,000. For more information about Phish, see the official site http://www.phish.com or the Foundation’s fan-managed site http://www.phish.net.