January 21, 2016 6:31 pm
Updated: January 22, 2016 3:11 pm

Winnipeg police officer inspiring kids one free music lesson at a time

A participant of Status 4 rehearses for their show on Janurary 25th at Celebrations dinner theatre.

Talia Ricci / Global News

WINNIPEG — A Winnipeg man with a hard job and a soft spot for music is changing dozens of kids’ lives. Kevin Gibson has served on the Winnipeg police force for 28 years, but has also played music all his life.

“In my job as a police officer, I’ve seen all walks of life,” Gibson said. “But I know music is a comforting source, it’s an inspiration.”

Gibson is now spreading that inspiration around through Status 4– a free music program for inner city children. His hope is that the opportunity to learn and play music at no cost helps to build the kids’ confidence, while keeping them away from trouble.

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“Music has always been my biggest passion, and it’s kind of been my rock,” Gibson said. “One of the most rewarding parts of this is seeing their confidence grow.”

The group meets at an Elmwood community centre each week. They learn to play instruments, sing and bond through music. The kids said it feels like an encouraging and safe atmosphere.

“The time just flies by, when it’s over it feels like I just got here,” 15-year-old Rachel Hay said. “It’s so fun hanging out with everyone.”

Hay loves to sing and often takes the lead vocal role when the group rehearses. She comes from a family of five siblings, so the free lessons are very helpful.

“My parents can’t afford voice lessons and stuff like that, I get to come here for free and learn, and I love to sing.”

The kids are performing at Motivational Mondays at Celebrations on January 25th, where Gibson will also be joining in on one of the songs.

© 2016 Shaw Media

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