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We were delighted to be invited by Care England to sponsor the Together with Music initiative, designed to strengthen and build upon links between education, health and community organisations through music.

Hundreds of care homes are expected to join in this project that links them to local schools and youth groups using the power of music and the internet. This will reduce the isolation that has been created by COVID restrictions. All care homes will be matched to a local school or youth group. Both the care home residents and the young people will choose songs that are meaningful to them and share them with each other. This musical introduction will act as a vehicle into further connection, creativity and stronger community links across England.

Music has been recognised as an effective way of engaging people including those with dementia which make up a large proportion of care home residents. This project builds on the impact of the BBC Music for Dementia initiative in September as part of World Alzheimer’s Month. An initial programme ‘Musical Conversations’ run by IMM with MHA showed the transformative value of these musical connections. One resident commented, “”Music is so powerful and it’s been really uplifting receiving personalised messages from the most wonderful children. Long may it continue!”

Through music and the act of music making, the programme aims to raise awareness, establish links and in turn, tackle loneliness, isolation and promote sustainable socialising for those most vulnerable. This campaign will encourage community partnerships and empower care staff, teachers and community members to play an active role in their neighbourhoods.

Launch care provider partners are Barchester Healthcare, Hallmark Care Homes and MHA. The programme’s education partner is Sing up! The project has been made possible with funding from Tunstall Healthcare and the Hallmark Care Homes Foundation along with supporting contributions from Zenergi, Oomph!, Independent Age, and CoolCare.

Professor Martin Green, CEO Care England, said: “Care homes are especially mindful of the need to consider the emotional and spiritual well being of residents whilst restrictions are in place to protect them from Covid-19. This project will bring a ray of sunshine to thousands of lives and help counter feelings of isolation during the winter months.”

Quote from Intergenerational Music Making and Together with Music Director, Charlotte Miller: “We are thrilled that we are partnering with Care England in this exciting intergenerational campaign. Together with Music will connect young people with care home residents through music to raise awareness, establish links and in turn, tackle loneliness, isolation and promote sustainable socialisation for those most vulnerable. It shall be through these magical connections and collaborations that Together with Music will build strong, creative and resilient communities. It starts with a song!”

Many care homes, schools, and youth groups have already come together, and the programme invites many more to join in!

For more information about to get involved visit these pages:

Why Together with Music? – https://vimeo.com/517766528

Members Songs and Stories – https://vimeo.com/519928863

Webinar Recording – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FESx1ihKwTE

Programme website: https://www.togetherwithmusic.org.uk/

11 Mar 2021

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