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Music and the Youth Sector

Sound Connections and London Youth training day

Sound Connections and London Youth have been working together since 2018 to bridge the gap between the music and youth sectors and, for the first time in January 2019, we hosted a training and networking session that brought together youth workers, youth centres, Music Education Hubs and other music organisations. The room was absolutely buzzing with energy and excitement about the opportunities for better collaboration and connection.

Some of the issues raised were:

  • Studio space in youth centres being un-used/under-used
  • Lack of knowledge, time or money to support people to progress musically within and beyond youth centres
  • Finding appropriately skilled musicians/facilitators
  • Sensitivities, challenges and opportunities with Drill music – in particular how to work positively with a young person to explore what their music is saying and why
  • Supporting young people into paid work

Some of the opportunities the group identified are:

  • Collaborative fundraising between youth centres and Music and Education Hubs
  • Opening up work opportunities for musicians (if funds can be raised to establish and sustain programmes in youth centres)
  • Resources that help with signposting and joining up opportunities across London
  • Professional music studios working with youth organisations
  • Potential for self-expression and for young people’s voices to be heard through music and other media

To read the full list of challenges and opportunities that were identified at the event, click here.

We’re now thinking hard about how Sound Connections and London Youth can continue to facilitate progress in this field; it was clear from the discussions and passion that there’s lots to be done and so much potential.

In the first instance, because working with Drill music came up repeatedly during the session, we have programmed a session led by youth worker and journalist Ciaran Thapar (who recently wrote this about Drill) at our annual gathering ‘Inclusive Practice in Action’ taking place on Thursday 14 February. There are still a few tickets available – check it out here.




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