Music Makers – The Beaufort Project
The Beaufort Projects supports adults with long-term mental health needs to live independently in the security and privacy of their own homes. The project successfully applied to the Age-Friendly Sheffield micro-fund in late 2021.
Music Makers is a Beaufort Project scheme, set up to bring people with long-term mental health conditions together around a shared interest in music. In 2021 supported living specialists Beaufort Project, engaged the support of Age-Friendly Sheffield to work with professional musicians to create a new Christmas carol. The aim was to help people living in supported accommodation build self-esteem and self-confidence; empowering individuals to go out into the community and volunteer.
Up to eighteen adults can be accommodated at supported living residence Beaufort, and people stay with the project for a maximum of two years. The accommodation, setting and wrap-around services intend to help people work towards independent living by developing important life skills. Crucially, the programme involves working with people to build self-confidence so that they can go onwards from the project to live well independently.
The aim is to help reconnect people back into their communities through empowering self-development opportunities such as volunteering and work experience. The Beaufort Project works with people to build confidence and knowledge around the practicalities of independent living, such as how to manage a budget, shop, cook and keep healthy. The staff team also works with partner organisations to deliver shared activities that develop skills and bring people together, such as metal working, gardening, music cooking and art.
Using micro-fund monies from Age-friendly Sheffield the Beaufort Project supported residents to meet two professional musicians over six sessions in a scheme called Music Makers. Collectively, they worked with the musicians and each other to create their very own Christmas carol.
The collaborative project culminated in the residents performing their new carol on 23 December and the success of the project has been widely linked to the fact that all residents made a contribution to the song and the performance, as Beaufort Project team member Adele explains: “Even if it was banging a drum or shaking a tambourine everyone got involved. The final carol involved drums, guitars, keyboards and sound effects. The feedback has been phenomenal. One of our most isolated customers wrote the words for the song. People attending the sessions were leaving with a real sense of achievement every time”.
Music Makers benefited from age-friendly funding because it was an intergenerational project supporting people at different stages of their life course to connect, create and collaborate; making music and living well.
Feedback from Music Makers:
“A real sense of achievement”
“Starting on a pathway that can lead to something”
“The achievement makes me feel good”
Would you like to learn more about Age-friendly Sheffield? We have been talking to people across Sheffield about what it means to be ‘age-friendly’ and how Sheffield can be a brilliant city for people to live at any age. Watch this video to get the story so far and join in the conversation through 100 Voices.