***FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE***
Nia Franklin Joins Sing for Hope in Piano Dedication at Duke University Hospital Continues Work to Advance Social Impact Initiative
RALEIGH, NC (August 12, 2019)— Nia Franklin, Miss America 2019 joined with international partner Sing for Hope today to dedicate a piano to Duke University Hospital.
As an arts education advocate, Franklin is spending her year as Miss America advancing her social impact initiative focused on creating opportunities for children and adults to enjoy the educational and emotional benefits of music. She has worked extensively with Sing for Hope, an organization driving the international movement for increased inclusion of the arts in global convenings centering on social change.
By partnering with Sing for Hope to dedicate a new piano to Duke University Hospital, Franklin will leave a lasting impact on children and families, just like hers, who utilize Duke’s facilities.
“Duke University Hospital schedules more hours of live music than any other performing arts space in the area, sometimes reaching up to 16 hours a day,” said Musician in Residence, William Dawson. “Music is a huge part of our program because we believe in creating a healing environment for all of our patients and their families. With Nia’s help of acquiring a piano from Sing for Hope, she is contributing to the healing environment of Duke University Hospital.”
Franklin and her family know the healing power of music all too well. Before becoming Miss America, Nia was a patient at Duke University Hospital, as she was the provider of a Stem Cell transplant for her father, James.
“ Music is an extremely important part of the healing process,” said James Franklin. “I’m very proud of Nia. I remember when my wife would come into my room and sing to me; how uplifting it was. It gave me the will to keep fighting. Often, when someone experiences an illness, everything is the science of how we are going to heal. Not everyone focuses enough on the emotional part of the healing process.”
For Franklin’s mother, Kristy, today is a special day to share with her daughter.
“ When this stem cell transplant came around, we had no idea becoming Miss America was on the horizon for Nia. I really see this opportunity as our life coming full circle. Nia knew early on how people appreciate music and how it made people feel good. She has embraced that as a way to give back, especially in healing ,” said Kristy Franklin.
Before joining her parents and Sing for Hope, Nia visited with patients and families during arts and crafts sessions at Duke on Monday. Visiting with patients across the country as a Sing for Hope partner and Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals Ambassador is just one part of Franklin’s job. Franklin has worked with the likes of Lincoln Center, ASCAP, and the Juilliard School to bring attention to the need for more arts education in schools.
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The Miss America Organization, a 501(c)4 works to empower young women through education and service. Miss America candidates contribute tens of thousands of community service hours annually and have raised over $17 million for Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals and Miss America scholarships since 2007. The Miss America Foundation, a 501(c) (3), provides academic, community service, and other scholarships to young women.