Calling All Triangle Parents!

10/07/2014 | By Amy Huffman

This post originally appeared on

If you have kids, committing to a full startup weekend might seem out of the question. We realize it is a big time commitment, especially for parents. So we've designed Triangle Startup Weekend Women to be as family friendly as possible. Through partnerships with both Marbles Kids Museum and Kidznotes, we've set up fun some stuff for your little ones to do while you innovate. In this post, you'll learn more about Kidznotes, hear from their co-founder, and find out why and how they're involved in TSW Women. In our next post, you'll learn about our partnership with Marbles and how it will benefit you, the participant. If you're not a registered participant yet, it's not too late! Sign up today!

[caption id="attachment_19879" align="alignnone" width="300"]Photo provided courtesy of Katie Wyatt Photo provided courtesy of Katie Wyatt[/caption]

Kidznotes is a Triangle non-profit providing orchestral training for underserved K-12 students. If you're intrigued and want to hear some of their kids play, you're in luck! Some Kidznotes students have graciously agreed to perform for our participants (and your families if they want to come!) on Sunday at 3:10 PM before presentations begin. Check back soon to get more details about our partnership with Marbles.


Today, you'll hear from Katie Wyatt, the co-founder and Executive Director of Kidznotes. Katie is an accomplished violinist who has performed all over the world and is now using her gifts to teach and inspire the next generation of musicians. Kidznotes has partnered with previous Triangle Startup Weekends and we are so thankful her team has again agreed to participate. To find out more about Kidznotes and their support for TSW Women, keep reading!


Question: Why did Kidznotes decide to participate in the TSW Women?

Answer: Because as a founder of a nonprofit and an entrepreneur, and a WOMAN, I think it's important that I and our girls in Kidznotes have a voice!


Q: What is Kidznotes?

A: Kidznotes is inspired by the international phenomenon of El Sistema, an evidence-based system of classical music for social change. Founded in 1974 by economist and professional musician Jose Antonio Abreu, El Sistema offers free classical music training for young children from highly impoverished backgrounds. El Sistema and its global offshoots focus on providing an environment of opportunity through collective practice of music through orchestral playing and choral singing as a model of social organization and community development. Since its inception, El Sistema has transformed the lives of nearly 2 million children.

Kidznotes, in its fifth year of operation, serves 315 K-7th grade students at eight Title-1 schools in Durham and Raleigh. In 2013-2014, Kidznotes expanded into Southeast Raleigh and enrolled 60 pre-K and Kindergarten children in three Title-1 elementary schools. As we scale our Raleigh program, we will work closely with the Wake County Public Schools Superintendent, principals and music teachers to select two additional Title-1 schools with the greatest need in Southeast Raleigh. Kidznotes intends to grow to serve 1,000 students in Durham and Raleigh by 2020, advancing our kids through a system of orchestras through the 12th grade. In its full complement, Kidznotes will keep children and youth engaged and in school, ensuring their successful transition to college or the workplace.


Q: What excites Kidznotes most about TSW Women?

A: The opportunity to learn from other innovative women about their ideas in social change, the arts, business, and economic and community development.


Q: What advice do you have for TSW Women participants?

A: I love learning about work in fields totally outside of the arts and social change - it helps me think differently about solving the challenges I'm faced with as we develop Kidznotes. I encourage participants to seek out work totally different from their own, and find similarities or totally new ideas, to change the way you make decisions.


Q: Any other information you’d like participants or those considering participating to know about Kidznotes & your support for TSW Women?

A: Please come check out our girls performing at the opening of the final pitches on October 12th!