Harmony Garden Music Therapy Services has been providing music therapy and early childhood music opportunities to families and individuals in Jackson, MI since June 2006.
Jaime Lawrence, MT-BC has been a musician her entire life. She grew up singing in a local church choir, has played the flute for over 25 years, and in her adult life found a love of performing musical theatre and singing in bands. The days of jazz band performances and musical theatre are temporarily on hold though, as Jaime is also the mother of three young children who keep her busy! She and her husband have regular jam sessions with the three little ones – sometimes at the dinner table – so live music is still running wild!
Jaime received her Bachelors Degree in Music Therapy from Michigan State University. She completed her music therapy internship at the Center for Discovery in Harris, NY. This internship provided extensive training in creative and improvisational music therapy techniques.
She is nationally certified through the Certification Board for Music Therapists.
Jaime opened Harmony Garden Music Therapy Services (HGMTS) in June 2006, when she returned to Jackson. She wanted to give back to the community she grew up in, believing that music therapy and early childhood music have a place in her hometown.
HGMTS has been providing music therapy and early childhood music (Harmony Garden Sprouts) in Jackson ever since. “I hope to always think ahead, to educate Jackson on the benefits of music therapy, and to provide the best quality music services to the families here.”
Jaime has a very wide range of experience working in a variety of settings. As a music therapist, she works with children as young as 3 months old, as well as adults in Hospice and palliative care for those who are 70-100 years old. Her clientele is just as diverse as the ages she serves. Jaime has extensive experience and loves working in early childhood. She provides music therapy for preschools, playgroups, early on, great start, and for families who join the Harmony Garden Sprouts classes at HGMTS. Jaime works with individuals of all ages with special needs (autism, down syndrome, cognitive impairments), traumatic brain injury, mental illness, substance abuse, memory care needs (Alzheimer’s, dementia), and individuals who are in hospice.
Jaime enjoys working hard to help families in Jackson gain access to music services and is always trying to find a new way to educate and promote music therapy. In January 2016, Jaime joined the board of directors for David’s Promise, a ministry of Compassionate Ministries of Jackson County, that seeks to provide an inclusive atmosphere where people with and without special needs grow in faith, make friends, serve our community and share life with one another. In September 2017, Jaime joined the Jackson Jr. Welfare League and looks forward to even more opportunities to give back to Jackson.
To top this all off, for the past 15 years and counting, Jaime has helped to organize, run, and provide music therapy support for the Eric ‘RicStar’ Winter Music Therapy Camp in East Lansing, MI. Then she took this camp model, and started the New Song Music Therapy Camp with Compassionate Ministries of Jackson County in the summer of 2017. This camp is an annual event.
Bekah Moilanen, MT-BC received her degree in music therapy from Michigan State University and became board certified in 2007. She worked as a music therapist at The Center for Discovery in Harris, NY until September of 2010 when she relocated to Jackson with her husband and children to be closer to extended family. She began working for Harmony Garden as a contract music therapist as well as for Michigan State University’s Community Music School Music Therapy Department.
Bekah took a break from music therapy in 2014 to start a program for adults with special needs and their families titled David’s Promise, a ministry of Compassionate Ministries of Jackson County. This ministry enables individuals to make friends, learn about and use their gifts and talents and give back to the community. Now that it is an established and thriving community ministry, Bekah is excited to pass it on to others so that she can return to focusing on two of the things that she loves, music therapy and spending more time with her husband Scott and her five children.
Bekah officially joined the Harmony Garden Music Therapy team in June 2018, and is excited to continue serving the special needs community in Jackson and the surrounding areas.
Macayla Raney, MT-BC grew up surrounded by music in a small town in upstate New York. Though small, the one-room elementary school she attended provided choir, beginner band, and multiple handbell choirs. Macayla participated in all of them, standing on a stool to be seen over the music stand in the handbell choir. In second grade, she played percussion in the academy band down the street and began piano lessons.
When her family moved to Tennessee in middle school, she began to “tweedle” on guitar and became more serious about singing, joining a ladies sextet in addition to her school’s choir. This love for music followed her into high school where she continued in choirs, formed a ladies trio called Trinity Praise with her two best friends, and began to arrange music. In 2013, Trinity Praise partnered with the ministry In-Discipleship to release the CD Water To the Thirsty which features many of Macayla’s arrangements.
Macayla began to study music formally at Southern Adventist University where she sang in no less than five established groups as well as pickup choirs. After her first year, she flew to Orlando to job shadow a music therapist at Florida Hospital and never looked back.
In 2015, she transferred to Converse College to study music therapy. She participated in the club Musicians Helping Others, was nominated for the national music honor society Pi Kappa Lambda in 2017, and proudly claims the second highest GPA in the school of music and musical theater (she was beat out by her best friend and roommate).
Macayla completed practicums in pediatrics and hospice settings in the Spartanburg Regional Healthcare System, another at New Day Clubhouse (a mental health facility), and one at Harmony Garden Music Therapy Services.
Macayla returned to Florida Hospital and Florida Hospital for Children (now AdventHealth) in Orlando in 2017 to complete her music therapy internship where she was able to work with individuals of all ages, ability levels, and diagnoses—from NICU to older adults and everyone in between.
Aside from music, Macayla takes great joy in her faith, family, friends, Reese’s, chips and salsa, and large bodies of water. Macayla officially joined the Harmony Garden Music Therapy team in 2018 and is excited to be back at HGMTS to continue her journey as a music therapist.
Kara Rider, MT-BC grew up in Jackson, Michigan and attended both Parkside Middle School and Jackson High School. She began piano lessons at a young age and was involved in choir and band throughout school. During Kara’s 7th grade choir class, she was first introduced to the career of music therapy, and knew from that moment that she wanted to pursue music therapy as a career.
Kara received her degree in music therapy from Nazareth College of Rochester in 2017. During this time, she studied trombone and participated in orchestra, wind ensemble, and brass choir, and also worked as a student ambassador for the music therapy program. After graduation, Kara completed a 6-month internship at Golisano Children’s Hospital in Rochester, NY. At the hospital, she worked in various pediatric departments including general inpatient units, hematology/oncology, cardiac, pediatric intensive care, and with people struggling with eating disorders.
Kara’s family still resides in Michigan, and she looks forward to being closer to family. She joined HGMTS in 2018 and is excited to give back to the community that first sparked her interest in music therapy!
Shelby Stiles has been a resident of Jackson, Michigan her whole life. She attended Northwest High School, where she observed Jaime as a part of the Jr. Achievement’s education program. During high school and college, she continued to assist and volunteer with our Monthly Drop-In Music Therapy Group.
Shelby is a graduate of Western Michigan University and completed her music therapy internship at Bronson Children’s Hospital. During this time, she learned so much and was grateful for the opportunities it gave her as a developing clinician.
Shelby has two cats and one dog. She also loves spending time with friends and family, which makes it exciting to be doing music therapy in her hometown! She loves spending time outside, too.
Shelby joined Harmony Garden Music Therapy in 2018.
Over the years, Hannah began to witness firsthand the impact that music had on her life, and the lives of those around her. In 2008, Hannah’s family adopted two young boys from Ethiopia. It was through this experience that Hannah learned that music could bridge the gap between two worlds. Though they shared no common language, Hannah and her new brothers could sit and play at the piano together and have a musical conversation, listen to music and laugh at each other’s dance moves, or teach each other bits and pieces of their native language through traditional folk songs of their home countries.
This bonding and connection that Hannah experienced with her brothers, through music, led her to believe that professional music therapy services could provide healing for other adoptive and foster care families. It is Hannah’s dream to someday open her own private music therapy studio for adoptive and foster care families in need of bonding, communication, healing, and growth.
Hannah began her college education at Taylor University of Upland, Indiana, with a major in music education (as they did not offer music therapy). She studied at Taylor for two years, where she was blessed with opportunities to travel to China, Greece, and Italy. She performed as a part of the Orchestra, Pep Band, Concert Band, and Bell Choir. Hannah also met her now-husband, Ryan, while studying at Taylor University, and they have been married for over two years and reside near Gull Lake Ministries, where Ryan works full-time as the media manager.
Hannah recently completed her coursework for her music therapy degree at Western Michigan University, where she served as a student music therapist in a nursing home, a middle-school classroom for students with special needs, and with one-on-one clients of varied ages and diagnoses. Hannah is looking forward to working under the direction of Jaime Lawrence, MT-BC, where she will continue her education as a future music therapist!