The Playhouse has received £4,425 to fund the Song for the Soul Choir for adults with a diagnosed severe and enduring mental illness in Derry, Northern Ireland. The donation was provided by the Santander Foundation, which offers Discovery Grants to UK registered charities for projects that help disadvantaged people in local communities. The Playhouse is one of Northern Ireland's leading Art Centres providing arts activity for over 20,000 people each year.
The grant will benefit a choir of adults with a diagnosed severe and enduring mental illness formed through a partnership between The Playhouse and Western Health & Social Care Trust. Group singing is widely acknowledged to yield many health benefits including positive emotions, emotional regulation, changes to self-perception, increased energy / motivation, the re-establishment of productive routines and a sense of purpose. It also and helps people to find their voice.
Siuan O'Doherty, Education Officer at The Playhouse said "The Playhouse is delighted to receive this grant as it ensures that we can continue to work in partnership with WH&SC to develop the skills and relationship with the Song for the Soul Choir participants. These weekly workshop have proved beneficial for all involved. The feedback from the group shows that it has greatly improved wellbeing and is a real boost to the start of the week, with participants looking forward to the workshop."
Jonathan Head, Manager at the Santander Foundation said: "The Santander Foundation makes hundreds of donations every year to good causes throughout the UK. Our branch is committed to playing a key part in the community and we are delighted to be supporting The Playhouse, and hope the donation makes a real difference to local people."