The Freedom of Mind Choir isn’t about being note perfect. Instead its aim is to improve the physical, mental and emotional wellbeing of participants through song.
"I've seen people come in and start off singing in a whisper to now doing solos" says Emily Stewart, Arts Coordinator for Falkirk and District Association for Mental Health (FDAMH), the organisation behind the choir.
She continues: "It's a huge improvement from people who wouldn't even make eye contact, to now laughing and smiling and going out with others and just sharing this experience and really living their life. They’re not just surviving, they're thriving. It's the biggest gift we can give to our clients."
The choir, which meets weekly, is led by Scottish singer-songwriter Kim Edgar and thanks to National Lottery funding has been able to perform at a range of local events as well as the Scottish Parliament. An album is planned as a way of celebrating the participants' success and further building their confidence.
Emily continues: "This outreach is a really vital part of what the choir is all about. Our community performances are about breaking down stigma and discrimination and spreading the word about what mental health actually is.
"Everyone has mental health, it’s about whether or not we take care of it. Sometimes people can run around leading very busy lives without sparing much thought for their own mental health, so we definitely want to promote the importance of self-care."
For more information about Freedom of Mind Choir visit the website.
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