Supporting young people through the coronavirus crisis
Providing relevant, valuable and practical support to our students and beneficiaries during the current crisis is at the core of everything we are doing during this pandemic. Not being able to come to the academy every week, because of the coronavirus lockdown, presents a real loss for our children and young people:
- Disruption to the security of their weekly routine at a difficult and worrying time;
- Disconnection from their World Heart Beat ‘family’ who provide them with support when they may be missing that at home;
- Discontinuity with their music learning, which gives them a sense of purpose, self-worth, and identity.
Online lessons & socials
It’s a critical time for us to support our students — we are offering online music-making, one-to-one lessons, supported practice, and social sessions for EVERY young person. That’s around 350 students and 475 sessions every week.
Our online support:
- One-to-one tuition for students — on a weekly basis with one of our professional tutors, enabling them to develop their skills and motivate them to practice. Previously these students would have been taught as a group but, due to technology limitations, this is not now possible. Students will now benefit from individual lessons.
- Social interaction sessions — these larger group sessions will use music as a basis, but the primary focus will be bringing together larger cohorts of students – providing them with much-needed peer to peer engagement. We are striving to re-enforce a sense of belonging during this challenging period of isolation. An example of this would be a music listening session, followed by a chat led by a musician, somewhat like a “book group”. We encourage the young people to bring a soft drink and encourage social chat too.
Adaptable and future proof
We trust that our response to Covid-19 has proven that we are innovative – adapting digital technology to meet our aims, and highlighting the value of our service in improving the mental health and wellbeing of our students. It also provides a platform from which we can continue to explore and develop different ways of meeting the needs of disadvantaged young people both now, and moving forwards.
In addition to our digital teaching and support programme, we are developing new digital access and content — such as the creation of online performances and lockdown videos. It’s vital that we continue to nurture the next generation of artists and audiences. Through the sustained engagement of our students (many who come to us for 7 years+), they will still be able to enter careers within the music industry, playing an important role in helping to diversify the UK music sector.
Our pool of professional musicians are highly diverse, playing and teaching a breadth of instruments and music from western classical to Asian and Jazz. Employing them through the crisis and beyond, we will further contribute to the richness and diversity of arts and culture.
Our online concerts will provide access to live music featuring international musicians, under-represented artists and under-represented music genres, plus a platform for emerging talent to reach new diverse audiences from across the capital. This is especially important at a time when all venues are closed because of lockdown.
Our activity continues to focus on breaking down the barriers that prevent young people getting in to music, addressing the lack of diversity within the sector, the social exclusion within our communities, as well as delivering grassroots cultural experiences which engage with society as a whole.
Covid Support Appeal
Every donation helps us support young people during this pandemic. Our online activities give them something to look forward to, a positive focus and social interaction — vital in these challenging times.