£300k grant for ‘In Harmony Liverpool’ expansion

Esmée Fairbairn Foundation has awarded Liverpool Philharmonic a generous grant of £300,000 over four years to launch two new In Harmony Youth Hubs providing free weekly music tuition for local young people aged 11-18.

Everton Youth Hub opened at North Liverpool Academy in September, with Anfield Youth Hub opening at Liverpool Lighthouse in November.

Launched in 2009, In Harmony is Liverpool Philharmonic’s flagship community music programme for children, young people and families living in disadvantaged areas of north Liverpool.

Through creating and performing music together in orchestras both in school and at after-school clubs throughout their childhood, In Harmony helps young people gain skills, confidence, and access opportunities to raise aspirations and improve life chances.

An extensive community consultation including young people, 15 local organisations and In Harmony partners in Everton and Anfield identified that there is a need for increased community provision for teenagers to take part in positive activities that can enhance their skills and improve their mental health.

The Youth Hubs will ensure existing In Harmony young musicians, many of whom have been part of the programme throughout primary school, can continue making music together during their teenage years and that more local young people living in Everton and Anfield can join the programme free of charge, taking its overall weekly reach to 1,750 children and young people.  

The Youth Hubs will initially operate one evening a week and deliver a broad range of activities covering music and other personal development, including instrumental tuition, rehearsals, regular performances at venues including Liverpool Philharmonic, creative development such as composing and improvising, masterclasses and workshops featuring guest artists and musicians.

The programme will also provide pastoral support and a wide range of projects equipping young people with vital skills for employment, training or higher education. Young people wishing to take their music further will be supported to access a range of pathways through Liverpool Philharmonic Youth Company, Resonate Music Hub and other opportunities in Liverpool and beyond.

Jasmine, a Youth Hub participant, said, “Since joining the Youth Hubs I’ve been playing the cello. It’s such an unusual instrument; I’d seen one on telly before but I’d never thought I would get to play one myself – I look forward to getting it out to practice at home after sessions.

“It’s phenomenal to work with amazing professional musicians from Liverpool Philharmonic. I never thought that was possible before I joined the Youth Hub in Everton. I’ve been really enjoying the sessions, especially our String Orchestra; hearing all the instruments together is so special.

“The Youth Hub has really boosted my confidence and has enabled me to apply for other opportunities like the National Orchestra for All programme. I can’t wait to think about the next steps in my future and I have people around me to help me explore options. I want to share my experience at Youth Hubs and be an ambassador to help more young people join up.”

Betsy (pictured, main image), a Youth Hub participant, said, “I really enjoyed being part of In Harmony in primary school, learning an instrument and playing at Liverpool Philharmonic Hall. It’s great that I can continue with In Harmony during secondary school and keep making music with my friends.”

Peter Garden, Executive Director – Performance and Learning at Liverpool Philharmonic said, “We are grateful to Esmée Fairbairn Foundation for this significant new investment into In Harmony Liverpool. We are committed to both nurturing musical talent and actively removing barriers that stand in the way of young people fulfilling their potential. Local young people have faced an incredibly challenging time recently and we hope that through this grant and by working with fantastic local partners, the two new Youth Hubs will provide a welcoming space in the community for time with friends, to make music together, learn new skills and support their mental health.”

Esmée Fairbairn Foundation is an independent funding body. They contribute to a wide range of innovative projects which support their goals: to improve the natural world, secure a fairer future and nurture creative, confident communities.

To sign-up to these FREE youth hubs, young people must be aged 11-18 years and live or go to school in Everton and Anfield. Participants do not need to have any prior musical experience, just a willingness to learn. Instruments are provided free of charge for the duration of the participants involvement with the programme. For more information, please visit https://www.liverpoolphil.com/take-part/in-harmony-liverpool-youth-hubs/

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