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YMCA West London

YMCA West London

Local community partners

The West London YMCA is a charity that supports young people from all sorts of backgrounds at different stages in their lives. They work with the young people to help them build a future through a wide range of activities, from providing housing and childcare to supporting young people and their families. Fusion Café is located below a block of YMCA accommodation in Hayes, West London. The café provides a space in which young people in the area can socialise, play pool/table football and take part in the programme of activities on offer.

During the months of March – April 2015 Music In Detention ran a Community Exchange project at the Fusion Café, working with a variety of young people in the Hayes area who attend the centre, including young refugees and asylum seekers and young parents. The artists who facilitated this project carried messages, lyrics and music between the young people and a group of detainees at Harmondsworth Immigration Removal Centre initiating new lines of communication between the two groups. The project resulted in the creation of 11 original tracks of music written and performed by the two groups.

The first project was so successful that we were invited back to run a second project at the Fusion Café in September – October 2015. Some of the participants from the first project returned and took on the role of mentor, working with some younger teenagers to create their own tracks of music. Some of this project was filmed and made into a short feature called ‘Keep On Fighting’.