“Because if you believe in something, it’s believable”(C, aged 16)
During lockdown, spring and summer 2020, we worked with a fabulous group of young people, alongside The Venture Project in White City, meeting weekly via Zoom, listening to and watching music videos together, and discussing thoughts, feelings and opinions on music, and life in general.
“People were always telling me what I should be doing, how I should be acting…when we talk it makes me think about stuff in the past…”
Over the course of the project, 9 young people participated in 10 Zoom meetings; 2 ‘meet the artist’ sessions with Conrad Murray and Luzzey; 3 face-to-face sessions at The Venture Project; and a trip to the theatre to see ‘The Wizard of Oz’ at Painswick Rococo Gardens.
A sense of belonging, trust, positivity and group support rang through the sessions, increasing as the weeks passed. In a world where nothing was certain, social interaction was limited and everything turned upside down, these young people came together on-line to listen, talk, socialise and share.
They increased their confidence in expressing their thoughts, feelings and opinions in response to pieces of music; learnt to listen to others and appreciate each other’s points of view; to feel that their views were valued by other.
“It’s all the stuff I thought and felt through secondary school. I’ve never had the choice to take the easy path…”
Here is what Caroline from The Venture had to say:
“ it’s been really good to get the young people involved and giving them some structure within their lives … Some really interesting things have come out, we’ve had some sessions where we’ve laughed and laughed, and some where it’s been really emotional. We have had tears and laughter because they’ve felt in a safe place to open up and share. And the understanding which is sparked off a different conversation from another young person that might be having similar thoughts. And just sharing that ‘I’m not alone, there’s other people out there that have these fears and anxieties’.”
And Nicola from Strike a Light:
“It has been a genuine privilege getting to know this group of young people and sharing an insight into their lives and how they have been feeling through this time. The weekly meetings were a joy, and I loved the eclectic mix of music that they all brought to the table – everything from ACDC to Rick Astley, you never knew what was coming up! We had some great chats about music, how it made them feel different emotions, or reminded them of a particular time in their lives. I can’t wait to see how they get on with being involved in producing a community song, and I’m also hopeful that we can take the ‘Hear me Out’ model and work with other community groups in the future”
We are currently looking for other partner organisations to work with on ‘Hear me Out’ – if you are interested in finding out more, please email email@example.com.