Getting creative with music

8th April 2019

Youngsters in and around Kendal are getting more digitally creative with sound and music thanks to an #iwill grant of £4,500 awarded to Heron Corn Mill in Beetham.

The Mill Hoppers is a monthly youth group for more than 70 youngsters aged 7-15 and split into two age groups, with many of the boys having special needs. The groups do a wide range of work connected to science, engineering and technology with a range of artists and tutors.

The grant has encouraged the older group, those aged 13-15, to volunteer and mentor the younger group, while working on more challenging projects and offering them more freedom of expression within their work.

Young people in the group learn a number of important key skills based around music and video production. Group members are also mentored on a one-to-one basis by the artists leading the group, who have a number of years’ experience in their respective fields.

14 year old Benedict said: “All of the sessions so far have been really enjoyable and interactive. We have some really interesting and charismatic people each having their own skill sets and abilities to do with making electronic music. My personal reason for attending these sessions is all down to extreme enjoyment of this particular course, I sincerely hope that we can continue to develop this group and maybe utilize this for fundraising for Heron Corn Mill in the future.”

Audrey Steeley, Creative Projects Manager at Heron Corn Mill said: “The boys hope to showcase some of their music and video at another event at the mill. Other younger members of the youth group are showing much interest in joining as they see the boys becoming volunteers. When the youth group is in session the older boys are now speaking to the public, serving them with coffees and teas, showing them around the buildings. It has really enhanced their confidence and self-esteem -not forgetting that two of the boys are severely autistic and another has Type 1 diabetes and communication issues.”

The project aimed to help the youngsters reach their full potential in areas they are most interested in. They have gained skills to transfer to other projects and have developed the skills necessary to mentor and assist their peers.