Plymouth Music Zone
I have been incredibly honoured to be appointed as a Trustee of Plymouth Music Zone. They are a fabulous local Plymouth Charity that uses music to make a real difference in the lives of local people. Their tag line is “music making a difference”. Their website is: www.plymouthmusiczone.org.uk check them out and have a look around. Their mantra is: “We love music. We love people. We love making a difference”. If you want to see me as Trustee, that can be found at: www.plymouthmusiczone.org.uk/trustees
PMZ work with all ages and reach around 1000 people per week, 95% of which are considered “at risk” for some reason. They work with very young children, including babies in the multi sensory room. They have sessions for teenagers, who play in a band and make great music. Their work also encompasses adults, including the elderly, in fact there isn’t an age group that they don’t work with! Their aim is to ensure that people don’t feel lonely or isolated, but empowered and included. They promote kindness, equality and diversity, what a fantastic set of ideals to promote, isn’t that what we should all live by?!
Many of the people they work with are facing tough or challenging circumstances or going through some really difficult changes either through isolation, poverty, bereavement, mental illness or life-limiting physical illnesses. They may also be carers, families of people with a disability, people who are socially ‘at risk’ or with a disability themselves who may find it harder to access music or other social experiences. They take part in the music in part, because they love to and it brings joy to their heart, that’s a lot of why they do it, but the outcome of the joy they feel means that they have improved self-esteem, self-confidence and wellbeing and are appreciative of the skill they have learnt or experience they have taken part in.
PMZ runs outreach programmes, so they go to residential care homes to work with people there and I went along to a session in Devonport Park a few weeks ago where different participants were making amazing music for the general public to just come along, sit on the grass and enjoy a free music spectacle. It was a day of families enjoying the music, having a bit of a picnic (as it was next to the café in the park) and enjoying the wonderful music, a very relaxing moment in the park – wonderful!!
I’ve been to see their community music centre, which is an eyecatching blue, right in the middle of Devonport. Inside there are a number of areas, including a recording studio, a large hall in which all kinds of music is played and a multi-sensory room. The large hall is big enough to have groups of people and when I visited the first time, there was a group of teenagers in there making incredible music.
So that’s an overview of what they do, but until you see what they do in action and hear the individual stories it doesn’t come near to what PMZ does. Time and time again the Music Leaders tell stories of the impact that they work that they do has had on an individual, supporting a stroke survivor to recover some of their speech, enabling a young boy to feel safe enough to speak when they ordinarily wouldn’t be able to, keeping kids from getting into trouble and on and on these stories go. They have an impact on the Music Leaders, so PMZ is a place of tears, tears of joy as these stories are sooo impactful!! Impactful on everyone – the participants, the Music Leaders, the Volunteers, the people who hear their stories and the Trustees like me.
If you want to know more, then check out the website or contact PMZ (or me) directly. If you want to participate or volunteer, then contact PMZ tel: 01752 213690. They are amazing people there, incredibly friendly and welcoming. If you want to donate to keep their work going, then contact PMZ, your donations will be greatly appreciated and the money put to fantastic good use for the benefit of local people.
I would like to thank Debbie and her team for the fabulous work they do, thank the other Trustees for the honour of appointing me as a Trustee and thank everyone who participates and supports this fabulous local charity using music to make a difference!!