Meet Our Changemakers: Half Step Away – Music Centre

Names: Adrian Deschamps, Shane Trowbridge and Jordan Bonneau
Faculties:
Adrian Deschamps: Disability Studies and Psychology
Shane Trowbridge: Music Theory Education
Jordan Bonneau: A bachelor in Commerce with a major in Finance
Company Name: Help Step Away – Music Centre 

1. Tell us a little bit about yourselves 
  • Adrian Deschamps has 6 years of experience working with children and adults with various forms of disability and mental health; and also works in the fields of Industrial/Organizational Psychology and Community Integration Education. His educational background consists of an Educational Support (E.A.) diploma from St. Clair College, and a bachelor’s degree in Disability Studies and Psychology from the University of Windsor. Adrian has also received musical training in guitar and vocal and is motivated to combine psychology and music in his approach to working with individuals.
  • Shane Trowbridge has 16 years of music experience and plays a variety of instruments such as guitar, bass, and drums, specializing in composition, performance and music theory education. He studied abroad in Atlanta, Georgia, USA at the Atlanta Institute of Music and Media where he earned a certification of musicianship with honours. Shane wants to take what he learned from his experiences and apply the benefits of learning music and changing the field of education for the better to adhere to the needs and wants to future musicians. His philosophy of music is that music comes from the mind and anyone has the ability to be creative and enjoy the freedom that music offers.
  • Jordan Bonneau has experience in woodworking, manufacturing, CAD design, electrical, and business. A bachelor in Commerce with a major in Finance is currently being pursued through Athabasca University and a certificate in Electrical Techniques was achieved through St. Clair College. Working in the automotive industry for over ten years has provided experience in manufacturing and CAD design. Woodworking has been a hobby since childhood and has allowed Jordan to create his own guitar. With over a decade of music experience, Jordan wants to create an instrument that is unique to the individual playing it.
2. Tell us about your company 
Half Step Away will be a full-inclusion music centre, that offers accommodated music programs for people with OR without mental health differences and disabilities. Our music programs are developed using a person-centered approach, so that learning opportunities will be tailored to the individual and supporting their unique needs and personalities. Our programs will include one-on-one music lessons, group music activities, accessible instrument building and design for people with physical disabilities, creation of a safe and creative jam space for students to use, providing workshops on different or specific musical ideas, practices and software education and additional extracurricular activities and programs.

3. Why do you feel the Libro-EPIC Social Enterprise program will be beneficial to growing your company?
Half step away feels that the Libro-EPIC Social Enterprise program will be beneficial in assuring that the company will grow through the mentorship, marketing, networking, and workspace opportunities. The program is an incredible learning facilitator which helps our company maintain an innovative direction through a structured development process.

4. Why do you feel its important to have a company like yours in our community?
Half Step Away feels it is important to have a company like ours in the community because of the lack of fully-accommodated programs in the music educational field. We truly believe that creating this full-inclusion learning environment will help people have a sense of purpose, express their own creativity, and create social connections and experiences with other creative individuals. Half Step Away wants to create an environment where people with disabilities, mental health differences, and the neurotypical/able-bodied population can come together and become one cohesive group of people driven by creativity.

5. Where do you hope to see yourself and your company by the end of the program?
Half Step Away is seeking to validate our business model as a social enterprise with help from the mentorship available to us through the Libro-EPIC Social Enterprise Program. By the end of the program we hope to have a better understanding of our customers and competitors in the market along with the products and services we will provide.

In the future, we will be offering a free lesson experiment to help us apply our findings and improve the services we want to bring in to the community (please contact Shane Trowbridge for more info: shanebasslessons@gmail.com). We are also planning to have a documentative web series to show our progress from the ground up while highlighting our passion for this project. Social media will be coming soon, keep an eye out on all platforms!