Choir members attend weekly 3 hour workshops over 12 months and 2 external performances, which are split over seasons of upto 13 weeks. Workshops include soft skill development building, confidence and self-esteem to enable participants to then explore different aspects of musical appreciation and rehearse a repertoire of songs finished off with refreshments and an opportunity to socialise. Travel and childcare facilities are provided for those who would otherwise not be able to attend, promoting inclusion and accessibility to services. JNC has had over 100 participants sign up and has a regular performing group of about 60 people out of whom 30 perform at external events. The choir get to perform at 2 external performances a year – World Aids Day, nOSCARS our awards ceremony.
What we'll deliver:
Why it's a great idea:
The choir creates a positive intervention in a setting which did not exist previously as we are the only BAME lead choir in London for people living with HIV (PLWH). Acting as a way to reduce isolation, encourage social participation and to create a sense of community. It will build stronger relationships that reduce stigma, prejudice and discrimination as the main barriers faced by PLWH. The choir supports mental wellbeing through weekly singing sessions, motivating members to come out of their homes and connect with other people, set goals, encouraging participation and reducing isolation. Survey results have evidenced an improvement of positive mental health amongst people attending the choir. Research has shown that singing in a choir has many benefits for physical and mental wellbeing, leading some to campaign for it to be prescribed as a treatment for medical conditions.
Steps to get it done:
The public performances provide a platform to showcase the achievements and the positive contributions made by PLWH include - World Aids Day, yearly performance at our n OSCARS Awards Ceremony, Diversity Week in October 2016 and in 2016, HRH Prince Harry took to the stage and danced with the choir during a rehearsal. Paul Boldeau Choir Leader "JNC has been such an inspiration to be part of. It is experiential, emotional, physical, vocal and yet also full of love, kindness, acceptance and generosity." Daniel Thomas Conductor "When I was asked to participate in JNC, I had no idea how much impact they would make on my life. I have been so blessed to be inspired by a group of people from various backgrounds, under the umbrella of the love of music, hearing some of their personal testimonies and journeys has enhanced me in ways that I cannot even being to articulate"
About the space
London Borough of Hammersmith & Fulham