Help us get ‘on song’ in Carers’ Choir bid

We need you to vote for us PLEASE
posterWe’re vying for your votes in a bid to bring the power of singing to carers across Leicestershire, after being shortlisted to receive Big Lottery funding to set up a ‘Leicestershire Carers’ Choirs’ project.

However, the project will only go ahead if YOU vote in the Leicester Mercury between Monday 2 September and Monday 16 September 2013.

Simply pick up a copy of the newspaper between those dates, fill out the coupon voting for our Leicestershire Carers’ Choirs project and send it in to the address provided in the paper.

The musical venture would see us setting up two choirs in Leicestershire aimed at giving carers a break whilst participating in something joyful, uplifting and rewarding.

There are over 65,000 unpaid carers in Leicestershire (2001 census) and our Support for Carers project helps over 2,000 carers across the county. Research shows that carers generally make little time for themselves and can be isolated, vulnerable and prone to depression.

We plan to set up two choirs in the Oadby & Wigston and Hinckley & Bosworth districts –  areas that have a high concentration of unpaid carers. If the year-long pilot scheme is successful, we would like to take Leicestershire Carers’ Choirs to other locations across the county to reach out to more people.

Research shows that singing in a group lifts spirits, improves mental and physical wellbeing and gives members a real sense of achievement. By joining a choir with a manageable daytime rehearsal schedule, carers could take time out and meet with like-minded people without their caring role being the focus.

VASL’s Alex Reffell said: “Singing allows people to completely immerse themselves in the music and forget about their troubles for a while. Singing in a choir blasts away the blues, creates a sense of connectedness with other members and provides people with rewarding new skills.”

Similar projects have been successfully delivered in other counties, including Northamptonshire, and we’re  confident a Leicestershire scheme would be extremely well received by carers.

We’re among 16 organisations across the county who are battling it out to receive a lottery grant to fund a community project, after being shortlisted by the Leicestershire and Rutland Community Foundation.

Our Senior Manager, Maureen O’Malley, said: “We’re delighted our project has been shortlisted for funding. We’re passionate about delivering much-needed and exceptional services for carers across Leicestershire and believe the provision of choir sessions for carers would make a big impact.

“However, we need everyone to get behind us to make our musical mission a reality. Tell all your friends, relatives, colleagues and neighbours to go out and buy a copy of the Leicester Mercury and vote for our Leicestershire Carers’ Choirs project.”

Voting runs in the Leicester Mercury between Monday 2 September – Monday 16 September, 2013. Winners will be announced on Monday 23 September, 2013.

To find out more about Leicestershire Carers’ Choirs please call Maureen O’Malley on 01858 433232 or email

Follow our campaign on Twitter: @LeicCarersChoir and @vaslonline