Founded in 2005, the Fender Music Foundation awards instruments and equipment to eligible nonprofit music instruction programs. The donated items are lightly used, blemished, or otherwise imperfect and have been collected by the foundation from manufacturers and retailers.
The foundation currently is awarding acoustic guitars, electric guitars, acoustic-electric guitars, bass guitars, and the equipment necessary to play them. In addition, other traditional music instruments, including string instruments, woodwind instruments, brass instruments, percussion instruments, and keyboards, are sometimes available. DJ equipment and computers are not available through the program.
The foundation awards instruments only to music instruction programs at public schools or operated by 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organizations as recognized by the Internal Revenue Service. To qualify as a music instruction program, participants in the program must be learning how to make music and the program must fit into one of the following categories: in-school music classes, in which the students make music; afterschool music programs that are not run by the school; community music programs that offer music instruction to community members; and music therapy programs in which the participants make the music.
Music appreciation or entertainment programs do not qualify, nor do programs featuring professional or career musicians as instructors.
Complete application and eligibility guidelines are available at the Fender Music Foundation website.