We need YOU to help keep our community alive.
SoundSational was formed almost 10 years ago to allow members of our community to come together and help each other through difficult times. In most of our lifetimes it is hard to imagine a time more difficult than this.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic we have lost 80% of our business. With a heavy heart we took the decision in March to close our offices and studios. As an almost entirely self-funded community organisation every penny we make goes back into our organisation to make it the best we possibly can.
Who are we?
Since our creation in 2010, our main aims have been to promote social inclusion, make music accessible and use it to create community cohesion in, what can be, a lonely modern world. At SoundSational we believe that music changes lives and that accessing it can be a vital source of strength for our mental health and wellbeing.
As of this year we employ 7 members of skilled staff who deliver our programmes and work tirelessly to keep growing our community. We also have a large volunteers group who help to keep the community together. Our members pay a small subsidised fee where the level of subsidy is based on individual circumstance to encourage inclusion. Every penny we make from performance and delivery fees goes back in to our community to cover these subsidies and provide new opportunities.
We are also the 2019 winner of Lanarkshire's Business of the Year for Community Impact.
What do we do?
Our organisation currently has 3 main branches - a tailor made Music and Wellbeing programme, delivered in education, the NHS and corporate sector across Scotland, our 10 year old, multi award winning community choirs and our 1-2-1 music tuition.
While isolating it is vital that we all practise some self-care to protect our mental, as well as physical, health. As one of the first Lanarkshire businesses to sign the "See Me" Pledge it is extremely important to us to continue delivering as many services as we can during this difficult time.
As of the end of March, we moved all of our projects online allowing our Junior and Senior choirs to become virtual choirs so we can continue to connect. We will also be running new virtual 1-2-1 lessons to compensate for the studio closures. We will continue to adapt to the changing situation and keep delivering for our members and are now running around 16 online sessions a week for members.
Usually, our choir members, who start at around age 10, spend their spare time performing across Scotland and beyond at up to 40 events every year. Some of the opportunities we have had include opening the SSE Hydro (before Rod Stewart!), singing with Hugh Jackman on his world tour, several appearances on the BBC and ITV, performing internationally in Portugal and Morocco and annual performances at events for charities such as CHAS and Chris' House! We also have 2 self-published albums featuring hundreds of members of our community choirs from the last 10 years.
During our first decade we were also privileged enough to be a part of raising over £500,000 for charities locally, nationally and overseas including St. Andrew's Hospice and Chris' House.
Further, while schools remain closed and we cannot deliver our normal programme we are also creating an online video series to provide to schools for students home learning and self-care.
Despite also being in difficult times, many of our members are supporting us in any way they can such as paying an increased amount for their monthly fees. We are inexpressibly grateful for the support we are being shown and appreciate every penny but it is unfortunately not enough to compensate for our loss of earnings and continued outgoings.
Our members are a family and we have promised that we will try to ensure some of our services can continue with as much normality as possible. We can only do this with your help.
Why should you help us?
As with many small businesses, we will struggle greatly through this period of isolation. While continuing to try to pay staff wages we also, as most business do, have to pay for rent and maintenance of office and studio facilities alongside all the other costs and bills that come with running a business. During this period of lockdown, despite help from members, we will lose around £40,000. As of now, we have not been found to be eligible for the Government COVID Business grants. We are looking to initially raise just 1/4 of this amount which would give us a vital lifeline to keep this business running.
Over the last decade it has a been a pleasure to work with the amazing members of this community. We will do everything in our power to keep our organisation alive so that our members may come back to us as we were when better times return.