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Mental health choir hits the right note at community event

6 November 2015
Mental health choir hits the right notes

A Telford choir set up to boost mental health has held its biggest performance yet – at a Sanctuary retirement living scheme’s annual Big Lunch, attended by dozens of community members.

The group, Singing For Wellbeing, comprises members of the public and residents from Hartshorne Court, on Burton Street, Dawley, which hosted the public event.

The band, which rehearses at Hartshorne Court, was funded by Telford & Wrekin Council as a way of helping address a range of mental health needs, including depression and anxiety.

Scheme manager Vivienne Chalmers said: “At Hartshorne Court, we are always looking to tackle social isolation and connected mental health needs like depression and anxiety that can affect some of our residents, and the choir does just that.

“Everyone in the group is really enjoying taking part, and it isn’t just limited to them – other residents have also commented on how much they have enjoyed hearing the choir rehearsing.”

Hartshorne Court’s Big Lunch, which ties into the national event of the same name, consists of a free buffet for members of the community, funded by a Christmas Party Grant from Great Dawley Town Council.

Through Hartshorne Court’s own Big Skills initiative, the scheme also displayed a range of the weekly clubs it runs onsite, which are open to the public free of charge.

These include a creative colour class, computer class and art class, with tutors on hand to demonstrate.

Meanwhile, tickets were sold off for a fundraising raffle in aid of Severn Hospice, with prizes including wine, perfumes, picture frames and a large fresh flower display.

Vivienne added: “Each of these events is an annual staple at Hartshorne Court and this year we chose to combine them in one larger celebration of community spirit.

“It’s the perfect opportunity for people to share lunch with new faces and old friends, learn a new skill and help a good cause at the same time.”

Councillor Shaun Davies, Chair of Great Dawley Town Council, said: “Great Dawley Town Council offers a number of grants to support local groups and charities and it is always wonderful to see these grants used to bring the local community together.”

The project was funded by Sanctuary Group’s Community Investment Fund, supporting projects which benefit Sanctuary residents and their communities.