Through this strand we support the training and continuing development of West Midlands music facilitators, as well as building understanding and recognition of the positive impact that community arts and music-making can have on individuals and communities.
New Horizons: providing professional development training for musicians wanting to teach their instrument/voice, delivered in partnership with Birmingham Music Education Partnership (S4E). With the support of mac makes music, we are now developing the course to offer the Level 4 Certificate of Music Educators accreditation as an optional extra for late 2020. More details around how to apply for this course will be released in the coming months.
Song Lab Partnership: In 2019-20 Quench Arts will again be working in partnership with The SongLab and Birmingham Music Education Partnership to develop and deliver new training and development opportunities for staff in the area of popular and contemporary musical styles. This year The SongLab have put together a series of short taster videos around approaching songwriting and, in February 2020, will be delivering songwriting sessions for secondary school teachers in the BMEP’s Secondary School conference.
Shadowing/ Support Artist Opportunities: We try to build in opportunities for emerging and developing music leaders to put their skills into practice through our projects wherever possible, working with established music leaders whilst gaining feedback and mentoring support. Currently, we provide the following development opportunities in addition to longer and project specific training:
Wavelength Peer Mentor Opportunities (2 roles per year): for young people aged 18-25 to gain experience in supporting younger musicians with mental health conditions.
Musical Connections Support Artists (5 roles): through our Arts Council organisational development grant we have provided 5 Support Artist roles to work alongside our lead artists in each integrated mental health hub, enabling music leaders to build their confidence and experience in working creatively with vulnerable adults over 18 months. These opportunities have enabled Quench Arts to expand our team of facilitators that we can employ for our future wellbeing programmes.
Musical Connections Volunteer & Member Volunteer Roles: participants taking part in our Musical Connections group sessions for vulnerable adults really benefit from informal support and encouragement. Musical Connections volunteers are essential in helping ensure that all participants are engaged and that their access needs are met and are crucial in supporting the work of our Music Leaders. Each year we provide volunteer training for those interested (alongside DBS checks and references) and welcome interest from people from care/health backgrounds, or from musicians wanting to gain experience in community arts sessions for vulnerable adults. In addition to opportunities for external volunteers, we also encourage and develop longstanding project participants to take on member volunteer roles, supporting newer members as peer mentors and/or joining our project advisory group, helping steer project content and events, and helping oversee the future direction of Musical Connections.
Plugin Young Music Leader Roles (3 per year): through Youth Music funding for this project, we have built in 3 roles per year for young music leaders between the age of 18-25 to work alongside our lead artists in each inpatient setting each week. These roles are a fantastic opportunity for emerging music leaders to reflect on their practice, set personal goals and build their experience and confidence in music leadership, in supporting musical progression and in working in mental health settings. Over the 3 year programme, 9 Young Music Leaders will have the opportunity to build their skills across a year.
Plugin Young Project Coordinator Role (1 role): again, through Youth Music funding, we have built in 1 role for the project duration to help develop a young project coordinators’ skills and experience, working alongside Quench Arts Directors.
Mental Health First Aid (MHFA)/ Youth MHFA: Through our Wavelength and Plugin projects, we provide 8 annual opportunities for project staff and the wider workforce to receive funded places on these nationally recognised 2 day training courses.
Arts Award Advisor Training: Through our Wavelength and Plugin projects, we have provided funded opportunities for project staff and partners to obtain Arts Award Advisor status at Explore and Discover, Bronze, Silver or Gold level, as appropriate. We believe that Arts Awards are a fantastic way for young musicians to achieve an accredited award recognising their commitment and progress in musical learning.
Understanding the Needs of Young People on the Autism Spectrum: through our Plugin project we provide 5 opportunities per year for project staff and the wider workforce to attend this 2 day core training, delivered by Birmingham Children’s Hospital, which has Autism Spectrum Disorder accreditation.
The above opportunities are advertised externally, on our social media sites and via our Opportunities page, where relevant.
Seminar and Conferences: Quench Arts staff are firm believers of sharing our practice and learning. If you'd like to have access to the free resources we create, please head to: https://www.facebook.com/groups/QuenchArtsResources. In October 2017 we ran a conference called ‘Take Note – Music Aids Recovery', marking the end of our Reaching Communities funding for the Musical Connections wellbeing strand project. The presentations from this are available via the Facebook Quench Arts Resource Page detailed above. We also created 'on demand' online seminar content to share our learning from the first 3 years of Wavelength, our youth mental health project. The content can be viewed via a dedicated website page here.