A MUSIC project which offers a creative outlet for homeless and vulnerable people in Stratford has been awarded a funding boost.
Street Music, set up by songwriter Doug Armstrong, is a workshop helping participants to write songs and learn basic guitar skills.
Professional musicians Jack Blackman, Wes Finch and pop band Dodgy frontman Nigel Clark are also on hand to support the group.
The members use the sessions to help deal with personal difficulties, life experiences, addiction or isolation.
And the project – also supported by Stratford District Council – has been granted more than £14,000 by Stratford Town Trust.
It is part of the new Street Arts Project created by Doug, playwright Jackie Lines and musician Chris Musson, following the success of theatre production Streets Apart – written by Jackie and based on the experiences of homeless people.
Doug said: “The quality of work and teaching is outstandingly high. The musicians relate brilliantly with our customers and get the very best results. It is deeply moving to be part of the workshops. The project will go a long way towards improving participants’ wellbeing and sense of inclusion.”
Doug has long been helping vulnerable people to find a voice through music and has organised many concerts and even produced a CD with songs written by users of the town’s former homeless drop-in centre which closed in February due to safety concerns.
Jackie added: “We are extremely grateful to Stratford Town Trust for this significant grant. We do, however, continue to be deeply concerned about the welfare of our street sleepers who, for months now, have had no facilities for washing, provisions, or hot cooked meals.”
Street Music runs on Thursdays, from 2pm to 3.30pm, and is free to attend. Newcomers are welcome.
Contact Jackie or Doug at [email protected] for further information.