The power of music to draw young people out of themselves and to draw them together was never more evident than at the Clayton Wesley Church Hall on the afternoon of 30 May. The musical performances by twelve young people and Richard Chew’s band Working Dog Union were the culmination of eight hours of intensive rehearsal over two weekends.
The workshops were funded with a grant from the newly-created Karen Fitzgerald Fund which provides young people in care with experiences that would not normally be available to them.
Sue Nicholls who is spokesperson for the fund said ‘We approached the Southern Guardianship Hub at Marion with the idea of a music workshop for young people in care and Manager Adam Reilly was very supportive.
‘Two workers from Marion Meredith DuCain and Tony Satanek helped with finding interested young people and with the organisation and transportation.
‘Our starting group of 15 participants for the first workshop only dropped to 12 for the second one which is a tribute to the respectful and supportive way that Richard and the band members worked with them.
‘Really though, it is a tribute to the young people themselves, not only their talent but also the courage and resilience it takes for some to just get up and perform.’
In the words of some of the young musicians:
“I had a great time. I enjoyed the singing.”
“It was nice to meet new people and join in.”
“I had a wonderful day and it was awesome. Thank you for letting me come.”
The Fund celebrates the life and work of the late Karen Fitzgerald by, among other things, providing grants of up to $5,000 to support projects that assist the healing and development of individuals or groups of young people under the guardianship of the Minister.
Says Sue Nicholls, ‘We are keen to hear about projects, especially those that involve cooperation and co-funding so please give me a call on 0432 594 833 so we can talk and provide you with the guidelines and application form.’
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