Charity on a mission to empower young Londoners through music gets £60k cash boost

Sound Connections, based in Tower Hamlets, has received a £60k grant to fund its work giving young people opportunities to make music across London.

The charity, which delivers ‘ground-breaking musical opportunities’, has been awarded the grant by City Bridge Trust, the City of London Corporation’s charitable funder, to boost its support work. Sound Connections believes that every young person in London should have the opportunity to experience music-making. Over the last ten years, it has worked in partnership with a range of organisations to strengthen the music sector, bridge gaps in provision and deliver landmark music programmes.

Research undertaken by the charity in 2013 found an overwhelming demand for support for high-quality music education activities to help London’s young people facing challenging circumstances. In response, Sound Connections set up the Challenging Circumstances Music Network (CCMN) to roll out peer-to-peer support and new opportunities for shared learning.

Since it began, the charity has provided a wealth of opportunities and now supports 66 organisations in the capital. Member organisations include those that work with visually impaired children, refugees, young offenders, young people with mental health issues and disabled young people. Organisations like these are highly skilled and valued by their participants but are often under resourced and lack funding.

David Farnsworth, Director of City Bridge Trust, said:

“The project is doing a great job of supporting organisations across London who are opening up opportunities for young people from all sectors of society to learn music. Music education should be available to everyone, and Sound Connections is helping to break down barriers that can stand in the way. Since it began in 2002 the charity has established itself as a leader in young people’s music making in London and it is providing invaluable support to 66 organisations.

“City Bridge Trust is committed to tackling disadvantage across the capital and making London a fairer and better place to live.”

Philip Flood, Director of Sound Connections, added:

“We are thrilled to receive three year funding from City Bridge Trust. Long term support of this kind will enable us to expand and develop our network of individuals and music organisations working with children and young people in the most challenging circumstances. In particular we will be able to strengthen and improve how they monitor, evaluate and report on the impact of their work to funders and other supporters.”

City Bridge Trust is London’s biggest independent grant giver, making grants of £20 million a year to tackle disadvantage across the capital. The Trust has awarded around 7,500 grants totalling over £360 million since it first began in 1995. It helps achieve the Corporation’s aim of changing the lives of hundreds of thousands of Londoners.


David Farnsworth, Director of City Bridge Trust, is available on request for further comment/ interview

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Kristina Drake

Media Officer, City of London Corporation

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