(WTNH) – There’s reason to sing at the Queen Ann Nzinga Center in New Britain. The center was just awarded a $10,000 federal grant.

Connecticut Senator Richard Blumenthal helped secure the funds through the National Endowment for the Performing Arts. Organizers say engaging youth through this multi-disciplinary arts education program helps build self-esteem and hope for the future.

“When the kids come year after year, they come back, they perform, they all talk about that one thing that they learned or that they did,” said Dayna Snell, Queen Ann Nzinga Center Executive Director.

Each year, 20 children between the ages of 12 and 18 take part in the program. It’s been changing lives for kids in New Britain since 1989.