30/05/2024

Ministers Visit Colin Glen School To See Benefits Of Crescendo Project

First Minister Michelle O'Neill and Junior Minister Pam Cameron have visited Good Shepherd Primary School in Belfast to see the benefits of the Crescendo Project.

The Crescendo Project uses music within an educational environment to improve social, emotional and good relations outcomes for young children in disadvantaged areas, as well as delivering positive social benefits for their families and the wider community.

Children from Good Shepherd Primary School, along with their principal, Mr Damian O'Neill met with the First Minister and Junior Minister Cameron and shared their experience of being involved with the project.

First Minister Michelle O'Neill said: "It has been great to see first-hand the positive impact the Crescendo Project has had on all the children who have participated in it. I am delighted that The Executive Office, through the Urban Villages Initiative, has been able to support the programme. I look forward to seeing what is next for the project and the children who have taken part."
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Junior Minister Pam Cameron said: "It is so important that all children are given opportunities like the one provided through the Crescendo Project and it is fantastic to be here to listen to them play their instruments. It has also been encouraging to hear that this great project has brought benefits to the wider community as well as the children involved."

The Ulster Orchestra is the lead partner for this programme. Queen's University has been involved in the evaluation of the programme, which has provided evidence of the positive outcomes of the project.

The four primary schools involved in the Crescendo programme come together near the end of the school year to perform alongside the Ulster Orchestra. The next concert will be held on 13th June in the Ulster Hall.

Hugh McCaughey, Chair of the Crescendo Project, said: "We are delighted to have the First Minister and Junior Minister Cameron visit Crescendo today. Our goal is to transform the lives of children through music and the evidence shows it is having a very positive impact for children, schools and the local communities. The success of Crescendo is founded on the partnership of the schools, local communities and the Ulster Orchestra supported by Queen's University Belfast. We believe the results are not just short term, but Crescendo will have a positive impact for years to come. We would also like to explore how this could be scaled to benefit more children in other schools and communities."

The Crescendo Project has been proudly supported by The Executive Office's Urban Villages Initiative and has been awarded a total of £145,144 since 2022.

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