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Evaluation report released

Evaluation report released

25th June 2015

Over the last few months Music in Detention has been working with the Sound Connections Challenging Circumstances Music Network (CCMN) to produce an evaluation of a musical interaction between detainees at Harmondsworth Immigration Removal Centre (IRC) and young people at the YMCA Youth Café in Hayes, Hillingdon.  The report assesses the impact of the project and profiles Music in Detention’s approach to creating musical exchanges between detainees held in IRCs around the UK and community groups located close to these centres.

Sound Connections aims to ensure high quality music-making opportunities are accessible to every young person in London, reaching those who would otherwise struggle to engage with music activities.  One of Sound Connections’ main areas of focus is on musical inclusion and young people facing challenging circumstances. Through evaluation reports such as this one, Sound Connections aims to shine a light on good practice models that can be adapted and used to reach more young people in London and around the UK.

The MID community exchange project took place during the months of March and April 2015, and opened up a dialogue between the detainees and the young people. MID artists Yiannis Zaronis & Oliver Seager facilitated an exchange of messages and musical ideas, from lyrics and beats, to artwork and melodies, resulting in the production of eleven original tracks of music.

The report, researched and written by Katie Bruce, explores the project’s impacts on participants’ wellbeing and resilience, awareness and understanding, and musical skills.  Based on observations, questionnaires, interviews and focus groups, it contains a wealth of telling details about the creative process and the experience of participants.  The report will be a rich resource for MID, helping us to understand and improve our artistic practice, and make the case for the value of our work.

The report also looks at the project as an example of inclusive practice, examining what made it succeed and what could be done to improve outcomes further.  It puts forward a number of recommendations for MID and the wider sector, broken down into three categories:  concept, planning and delivery. We hope it will provide a workable model for inclusive music provision in Hillingdon and beyond.   

Hillingdon Music Education Hub have been involved in discussions about the report and recommendations, MID are working to use this project as an example for future musical activity planning, within the borough and further afield, and Sound Connections will use the report and the findings as part of their ongoing advocacy work and development of musically inclusive practice across London. 

We would encourage you to read the report, share it among your networks and of course we would welcome you sharing your thoughts with us via Twitter: @MIDdetention and @Sconnections.

You can listen to the music created on our Music page or on our Soundcloud site.

The full report can be downloaded here:

Evaluation report - Harmondsworth & YMCA project Mar-Apr 2015