Using music to tackle mental health

Sing for better Health group (Photograph: The Brighton Health and Wellbeing Centre) et0CShOpEc6XZemjofFK
Sing for better Health group (Photograph: The Brighton Health and Wellbeing Centre) et0CShOpEc6XZemjofFK

A project which uses music, dance and reading to tackle mental health has launched a fundraising campaign to continue its work.

Brighton Health and Wellbeing Centre (BHWC) has launched a crowdfunding campaign to raise £101,500 for the Healing Expressive and Recovery Arts project (HERA).

The project aims to prove that the NHS can save money on medication by embracing music and dance in mental health treatments.

GP Laura Marshall Andrews is now calling for the NHS to embrace alternative therapies and art to tackle mental health.

The project has been using dancing and singing improve mental health and social isolation, and found that 81 per cent of HERA’s singing group members reported making new friends and 71.5 per cent improved their breathing.

In the HERA book group, 100 per cent reported increased wellbeing.

It also said dance has been shown to improve co-ordination and reduce falls with the elderly.

Dr Marshall-Andrews said: “GPs need the freedom and the flexibility to try out different therapies and use different interventions. The HERA programme has changed many lives and adds humanity, creativity and community to health care. It is possible to live well with debilitating disease and projects like this help patients to see and experience that.”

The campaign, which has so far raised £80,000, ends on July 31. To find out more, visit: www.crowdfunder.co.uk/hera