PALMDALE – More than 75 volunteers turned out Saturday to lend a hand in painting and cleaning Palmdale’s newest Neighborhood House.
Palmdale Neighborhood House #3 is named “Gabriel’s House,” in memory of eight-year-old Gabriel Fernandez, who was tragically killed this year after prolonged child abuse. (Read more here).
“We have a large number of volunteers that want to make a difference,” said Palmdale Mayor Jim Ledford. “It’s a tragedy what we’ve experienced, so here is a very positive opportunity to come together and do something significant to set the stage for even more great things in the future.”
Gabriel’s House will provide children in the area with the opportunity to develop their creative talents, city officials said.
The 1,400-square-foot, three-bedroom home is expected to be completely transformed into a music and performing arts center by next month, according to Mike Miller, Director of Neighborhood Services for the City of Palmdale. The garage is being converted into a dance studio, with hardwood floors and mirrored walls, Miller said. The bedrooms will serve as music rooms where children will receive lessons in singing and playing musical instruments, Miller said. Three pianos were donated to the house already, Miller added.
“Hopefully the kids who come and participate in these programs will be doing performances at the Palmdale Playhouse,” Miller said.
Gabriel’s House will be run by The Art Branch Foundation, a nonprofit organization established in 2008. Founder Jimmy Lu said programs will feature all the major aspects of art, including dance, acting, drawing, film, music and photography.
“We have top-notch instructors and we’re providing all these services for free. To be a part of it, kids just have to come in and sign up,” Lu said. To learn more about The Art Branch Foundation, register for classes or make a donation to Gabriel’s House, visit www.TheArtBranch.org.
Sights from Gabriel’s House Volunteer Work Day