Health and wellbeing

Funding level: £10,001 to £25,000


We are partnering with Sinfonia Viva on their unique Derbyshire Carers Choir, which has been running successfully with initial help and support from Bupa UK Foundation. This wonderful opportunity was set up to enable carers to enjoy singing with others and provide a chance to socialise creatively with people facing similar challenges and pressures. Approximately 1 in 10 people across the UK are unpaid carers, that often go unrecognised or supported, and as a result their health can often be threatened. This Choir gives an opportunity for like minded carers to come together to share in support and to focus on themselves whilst singing, helping their own health and well-being. Sinfonia Viva offer quality and expert music leadership and in a friendly and supportive environment, focusing on their ethos of participation, engagement and creativity. Sinfonia Viva is a virtuoso ensemble delivering original and extraordinary creative musical experiences. Founded in 1982, Sinfonia Viva has a national reputation as a leader in creative music activity in the UK. Its work offers relevant and enriching possibilities for all. As Sinfonia Vivas' Education Manager Marianne Barraclough states 'Singing together is proven to be an excellent way of boosting self esteem and confidence, releasing pain and stress-relieving endorphins and being a part of a team that is creating something.'
As the National organisation for voluntary arts we are looking to support the development of this amazing choir and work with Sinfonia Viva on engaging with their volunteer carers and supporting them in singing. Voluntary Arts works to promote and increase active participation in creative cultural activities across the UK and Republic of Ireland. Approximately 10 million people participating voluntarily in creative cultural activities: this activity is, and will continue to be, a critical part of both the bedrock and the grass roots of the cultural life of our communities and nations. We provide information and advice services, undertake lobbying and advocacy work and deliver, and support the delivery of, projects to develop participation in creative cultural activities.
To be given the chance to sing in a supportive, comfortable and non threatening environment can be hugely beneficial to individuals and we wish to to help see this choir continue beyond its current funding. Going forward to next year Voluntary Arts can assist Sinfonia Viva in promotion and increased engagement of the choir. We can work with volunteer agencies in the region and support individual carers access the provision, enabling creative participation at grass roots level. We will be able to link the choirs' activity to our national Get Creative campaign, in which we partner with the BBC to celebrate and inspire people to try something new and to encourage people to share their own examples of everyday creativity. This would be an ideal opportunity to showcase the Carers Choir and enable more choirs to be set up where carers can come and 'have a go'. It would be great to see the initial model replicated across the region and to bring together more volunteer carers under Sinfonia Vivas' musical guidance and expertise. Gill, a choir participant said: “I was very keen to join Sing Viva as it was the perfect opportunity to take up singing again without too much commitment and have some positive ‘me’ time outside work and home. It is also good to meet other people who are caring for friends and family and face the similar challenges and pressures.'
This is a fantastic creative project for carers that needs to continue beyond the end of this year to continue the support of those individuals in their positive health, well being and creative enjoyment, to allow them to continue to care effectively for their loved ones.

Voluntary Arts England

Moment of Pride

The Carers Choir is a wonderful project, giving a valuable opportunity to promote health and well being of those who volunteer their care to others.We would be extremely proud to support this Choir to enable the creative engagement of carers, to enhance their own well being and social participation.

Location: Derbyshire, United Kingdom