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A decade of MID workshops

A decade of MID workshops

19th March 2015

This week marks the 10th anniversary of our first ever music workshop. To celebrate, we have released a video of a unique musical collaboration that took place last year between Campsfield House Immigration Removal Centre (IRC) and a group of local Oxfordshire teenagers.

Whilst the two groups in the video were unable to physically meet, we helped them co-create music, share stories and ideas. This gave both groups a voice and a valuable creative outlet.

See how they got on and hear their music in the video below.

Music In Detention Workshops, Campsfield House Immigration Removal Centre

Our first ever workshop took place in the Haslar Immigration Removal Centre in Gosport at the start of a programme which launched MID’s unique work in the UK’s detention centres. One of the detainees said:

“You’re just thinking about music. You’re thinking about how you’re going to improve the following day. And so all your thinking
 is music, music instead of detention, you’re going to be deported, everything’s a stress. Yesterday, I never even thought about detention.”

Then, as now, we used music to provide a means of self-expression, improve mental health and overcome stigma about immigration.

“I was worried that I was going to hear negative things about immigration. But that hasn’t come up at all. I don’t know if that’s because they’ve gone straight in with the music. Once you’ve heard real people singing, you stop judging. You don’t see them as an ‘other’; they’re just a person that’s involved in this process. So that’s been really great.”

Laura Sewell, Youth Arts Manager at Oxfordshire Youth (artsXchange)

Each year, 30,000 people are detained in UK IRCs. A recent study found that 83% of detainees suffered depression and 22% had considered suicide. Feedback consistently highlights that our workshops help relieve feelings of depression and isolation amongst detainees, and boost confidence and self-esteem amongst community groups.

Since our first 2005 workshop, we have worked with over 2,500 immigration detainees and 500 local community members living near to IRCs.

Donate now to help us hold more music workshops

Read more about what we do

Listen to our compilation CD: Unheard Voices: Sounds of MID

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