Two HC-One care homes in Manchester, Averill House and Pendleton Court collaborated with the Manchester University Music Society (MUMS) to take part in their Chamber Music Outreach programme which aims to bring the joy of music to those most isolated by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The project enables the students at Manchester University to share their music with the community and is running in parallel with other similar workshops with schools, charities and hospitals.
In December 2020, HC-One promoted a collaboration with a group of students at MUMS who shared a Christmas concert video with all the HC-One care homes in the Manchester area. Ever since, HC-One has been building on this collaboration and, in January, an interactive Zoom meeting where MUMS students played their instruments live for Residents and Colleagues at several of the HC-One care homes in the region was enjoyed by all.
Residents and Colleagues at Pendleton Court Care Home in Salford and Averill House Care Home in Newton Heath were treated to a live Zoom music session by three music students from MUMS. Residents enjoyed a wonderful musical morning as students performed musical pieces, ranging from Vivaldi to songs from the musical Grease. The music session was thoroughly enjoyed, and Residents, Colleagues and students engaged with each other, discussed and shared their favourite music, songs and danced together.
Residents enjoyed the opportunity to meet friends in other care homes and the students from the Society. The time spent together put smiles on the Resident’s faces and brightened up their days.
At Averill House Care Home, Wellbeing Coordinator, Jodie Yates stated:
“What a great session, we really enjoyed taking part at Averill House Care Home. Thank you to everyone involved for setting this up. It was simply amazing and our Resident Vera absolutely loved it! Vera thought it was a fantastic activity and was mesmerised by all the instruments, but in particular the french horn, the violin and trumpet. Vera also took delight in meeting the productive and talented students who were full of enthusiasm and she loved the social interaction with the younger generation. The session certainly really helped lift her spirits and she said it was so nice to meet other Residents at Pendleton Court. As I left Vera’s room later, she was humming away to another Colleague who had just gone in, telling her about the meeting. Thank you again, it was such a fun activity for all involved!”
At Pendleton Court Care Home, Wellbeing Coordinator, Lesley Pearson Moore said:
“Our Residents at Pendleton Court really enjoyed the session interacting with the students and also meeting the other Residents and staff from Averill House Care Home. Their mood and spirits were lifted so high after the session that we carried on singing and discussing different types of music afterwards. Elizabeth, who is a Resident at the home said how beautiful the music was when she was listening to the cello as she swayed to the sound. The ladies who took part in the session loved chatting and sharing their music preferences and favourite singers with the students. These sessions are invaluable to the wellbeing of the Residents we care for. It helps lift their mood and the impact it has on Residents when they listen to the music is long lasting. Our ladies Miar Taylor, Elizabeth Keating, Elsie Carney and Anne Chester carried on with a lovely morning of music afterwards. We would like to thank the students at MUMS and the HC-One Quality of Life team for taking the time to organise this, it’s fantastic!”
The Society also created a pack of material for the care homes consisting of pre-recorded videos of students’ performances. The care homes can access the videos online and enjoy the performances as often as they’d like.
To expand on the collaboration with MUMS, HC-One is working with them to continue to connect Residents and students through Zoom as well as providing students with the opportunity to start a pen pal scheme by writing letters to the Residents to build the relationship further, with the potential for them to meet in person one day in the future.
HC-One’s work with the Manchester University Music Society comes ahead of National Intergenerational Week, taking place from 8th to 14th March. The project with MUMS is part of a wider range of intergenerational initiatives that HC-One are participating in which are central to the wellbeing of Residents. HC-One’s aim is to promote intergenerational practice in its care homes and develop collaboration across different generations to bring people together in purposeful, mutually beneficial activities which help to promote a greater understanding and respect between generations and to contribute towards building more cohesive communities.
Robi Roccella, Head of Quality of Life at HC-One, commented:
“We have been delighted to work with the Manchester University Music Society to allow some of our care homes in the North West to take part in their Chamber Music Outreach programme which aims to bring the joy of music. The project has given Residents access to music and has also allowed students at Manchester University to share their music with our Residents. This experience is really valuable for everyone involved and promotes intergenerational practice, which is something we are passionate about as it enhances Resident’s wellbeing.
“We look forward to continuing to work with the Manchester University Music Society to roll this out to other care homes, as we know that there are a wide range of benefits to our Residents taking part in the project including providing Residents with a positive musical experience to help support them during the COVID-19 pandemic.”
Alex Cross, Vice-President of the Manchester University Music Society, stated:
“MUMS (Manchester University Music Society) have always had strong links with the wider community. Now, more than ever, in the current pandemic, we want to extend these even more through sharing and celebrating music.
“As part of Intergenerational Week, we’ve been seeing just how much a love of music is shared right across all our communities, regardless of age, background, experience (and even across Zoom!).”