What We Do
Voices Welcome creates singing opportunities with refugee communities in the UK.
Refugees in the UK can face many challenges and obstacles relating to legal status, housing, access to services and employment, as well as prejudice and intolerance in the face of increasing public anti-immigration sentiment.
We believe singing can strengthen the support offered to refugees and bring communities together.
There is a widely recognised body of research evidencing the benefits of singing in a community choirs. However, many refugees are unlikely to consider joining established groups due to barriers of inclusion. Voices Welcome overcomes these barriers by working in partnership with existing refugee support organisations and establishing regular singing groups in these centres.
Our approach is to create inclusive, safe and welcoming singing opportunities for refugees, and Voices Welcome achieves this by:
- Working with established and trusted refugee support organisations and partners
- Ensuring our singing sessions have no cost for participants or expectations that they need regular attendance
- Teaching songs that use the call and response method with no need for written materials or musical knowledge
- Including songs from around the world and in different languages
- Ensuring participants can share songs from their own countries and cultures
- Providing participants with the chance to regularly feedback and help develop and create the sessions
- Ensuring our sessions create a sense of escapism, there is no stress, pressure, or expectation, simply space to express creativity
- Offering opportunities for local choir members to join our singing sessions to bring people from the local community together
- Ensuring our sessions are always focused on a sense of enjoyment
We work in collaboration with delivery and funding partners to offer signing opportunities to refugee communities. We are continually seeking new partners to establish our next set of projects so we can deliver more singing opportunities so refugees can feel connected and welcome.