Meet Caroline. She runs Caroline’s Little Stars, a fun and relaxed music group for babies, toddlers and youngsters that gather in a small eastern Melbourne suburb. But the group does more than sing songs. Through music, Caroline and her little stars reach out right across Australia and overseas to touch the lives of other, less fortunate children by holding monthly fundraising classes.
Caroline Morpeth is a primary school teacher who taught in schools for 12 years until her first daughter came along. Trained also in Secondary music, the mother-of-two began Caroline’s Little Stars in 2008, when her eldest was about two years old.
“I’d been taking our girls to music classes and kept thinking ‘I could do this, I’d love it!’”
Caroline became friends with the teachers at these classes, and they began helping her collect songs and ideas to start her own group. Like all new businesses, her clients at first were her friends, who would gather with their children at Caroline’s house.
“It worked so well because I wanted to work but was a little reluctant to put the girls in care, so they came to my class…which meant they were having music classes as well.”
By the end of the year, Caroline would hire a space elsewhere to accommodate her growing class. She chose a room at St Faith’s Anglican Church in Glen Iris, Victoria, where she still teaches now.
It was at the start of Term 1 in 2013 that Caroline kicked off her monthly charity classes. At the start of the year, the dates are decided for the monthly Friday event, offering two morning sessions. At the end of the year, all proceeds from those days are dispersed among charities dedicated to aid for children.
“I absolutely love teaching the classes and thought it was a practical, convenient way of raising money for disadvantaged children.”
“I know there are lots of wonderful musicians and other artists out there who do really great things for people less fortunate, using their music in a positive way. It is really such a fabulous avenue for creating happiness and helping out in the community.”
Last year, Caroline’s Little Stars raised $3250, donated to three projects: a health program run by Anglican Board of Mission in Papua New Guinea, Anglican Overseas Aid’s Gifts of Light program, and an Anglicare project that supports children in crises, at that time aiding tsunami affected families in the Philippines.
St Faith’s also plays an important part in Caroline’s endeavour, supplying the hall to her for free on her charity days.
Just like the littlies attending the classes, Caroline’s Little Stars continues to grow. Last July, two new days were added, including Wednesdays at Ashburton Community Centre. While the charity classes remain popular, this year there are usually some spots available. The remaining dates for 2014 are October 10, November 14 and December 5.
“I’d love to continue running these classes for as long as I can. It’s such an enjoyable thing to do and so satisfying to know that I’m helping disadvantaged children at the same time as sharing the joys of music with little people.”
“I’m having fun teaching the classes, the children are having fun, and we’re helping those less fortunate at the same time. It’s a win-win situation!”
For more information about Caroline’s Little Stars or to contact Caroline visit http://www.facebook.com/carolineslittlestars
Photo courtesy of Boroondara Leader community paper