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  • › Growing Community Music: Project Update

    02/Sep/2020

    The next phase of CMVic’s Growing Community Music project (GCM) is gaining momentum, following the path forward which emerged from stage 1 to increase and encourage greater participation in community music making, across Victoria.

    The vision for stage 2 is a large-scale program to grow the number of music leaders, groups and participants in many different settings, including necessary training programs, mentoring, resourcing and advocacy. Once funding is secured, the plan is to employ catalysts in three regions: East Gippsland, Mildura Regional City, and City of Casey and the shire of Cardinia. 

    John Howard, CMVic’s Finance and Admin Coordinator and a member of the GCM steering group explains, “there’s a group in Mallacoota who have put in an application for money from FRRR for a project that CMVic would run and we would start up the beginning of GCM2 there. The remoteness of towns like Mallacoota means there is a real need for something like GCM2. There are lots of small communities doing it tough following the bushfires and this situation has been compounded by COVID-19.”

    CMVic is also applying for funding from a variety of other sources including the Helen Macpherson Smith Trust, and the Let’s Stay Connected Fund from the Victorian Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions.

    “We believe that the people most affected by COVID in those regions are people who don’t have the resources or skills or a combination of these factors to be able to meet up with other people online. We are now proposing a project which will do some intensive work in reaching out to those people and connecting them back in - if online really doesn’t suit them, with one to one sessions. In stage 3 lockdown, for example, you can meet up with one other person for recreational purposes and in this instance, that could be music-making.”

    The big question is of course, how long will it be before we are able to gather in small groups?

    John says, “If five people can meet up to play some music together and can then record themselves doing that to share with other people, it will be great for those in isolation to be able to play along with. We’ve always known that in addition to the joy it brings, the sense of social connection arising from singing and making music together is part of what makes it so important, and that is more complicated in these times.”

    Click here to read the outcomes and findings of the information gathering undertaken in consultation with community members during GCM stage 1, generously funded by the Helen Macpherson Smith Trust, and led by Project Managers Jane Coker and Lyndal Chambers, and keep an eye on the CMVic website for further news about stage 2 of this important project as developments unfold in the coming months!

    Photos: (left) Jane Coker leading a community consultation during GCM stage 1; (right) Making music in the community, with community street band The Fabulous Meltones