Wellingborough dementia choir sings for joy at further funding boost

A Wellingborough choir set up for people living with dementia and their carers has been awarded a grant to secure its future further.

Gareth Fuller, choir director, with the Dementia Sings Out choir
Gareth Fuller, choir director, with the Dementia Sings Out choir

Dementia Sings Out started as an off-shoot of the Wellingborough Community Gospel Choir, a project inspired by the BBC programme Our Dementia Choir.

Launched in July, the choir was initially privately funded by the gospel choir singers and last month received a £5,053 boost from Anstee & Co's charity golf day.

Now the choir has secured a National Lottery Community Funding grant of £9,420 to carry on its well-being mission.

Members of Wellingborough Community Gospel Choir have been trained as dementia friends

Choir founder, Ruth Bowe said: "We are thrilled to bits. It secures our future well in 2020 so we can just keep going and encourage more people to come along."

The choir has grown to more than 50 people living with dementia, their carers and the choir's trained dementia friends - totalling about 100 people.

Under the direction of choir leader Gareth Fuller - a trained dementia friend - the choir was granted formal charity status in November.

Ruth said: "We need to keep the momentum going to encourage more people from care homes to join us.

"We are hoping that we might bring in guest singers. Last week, we started to practice Christmas carols and it was lovely to see some of the people who are living with dementia sing along. They might only usually hum or dance along to the other songs but the Christmas carols really connected deep down, to when they were children. It was very moving."

Dementia Sings Out meet every Thursday from 10.30am to midday at the Everyday Champions Church in Havelock Street, Wellingborough, NN8 4QA.

The free to join choir is for people living with dementia and partners or carers.

For further details for anyone interested in attending, these can be found via www.dementiasingsout.org, Facebook page or email [email protected]