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VIDEO: Local care home sings the benefits of choirs

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A South Shields care home is singing the praises of local choirmaster Adam Allinson, after he helped them to launch a new community choir, Able Voices.

Wallace Mews care home has introduced a new choir initiative hosted by Choirmaster, aimed at young people and adults with additional needs.

Adam Allinson, the founder of Choirmaster, held some initial in-house sessions at the home, however, the staff and residents were keen to open membership of the Able Voices choir up to the local community.

The sessions, held at Marsden Road Health Centre, began on 6 November and run every Wednesday for people aged 16.

Wallace Mews is a purpose-built residential care home located within South Shields, Tyne and Wear, and provides personal care and support for a maximum of 15 people with learning and physical disabilities.

Lisa Gillis, manager at Wallace Mews, said: “We decided to start our own choir, so Adam from Choirmaster came and did some in-house sessions. We then decided that we wanted to branch out and do it with the local community, which Adam helped us to do.

“It’s been really well received by the residents. It’s such a positive experience for them. They get a lot out of it, they keep going back, and they’re committed. It leaves them uplifted and they’re completely engaged, which is wonderful.”

Linda, a service user at Wallace Mews and member of Able Voices said: “I really enjoy it. It’s really good singing and meeting loads of new people.”

Adam Allinson said: “Since we started with Able Voices, we’ve been doing all types of music, lots of pop through to musical theatre.  We always start with a warm-up because it’s really fun and engaging and gets everyone going. The rest of the session is about working on the singing. 

“One of the benefits of joining a choir is that anyone can join and anyone can sing, especially here at Able Voices.

“The group are progressing so well. They’ve only been going for a few weeks but they’re coming together so well. I’m so proud of them.”

Wallace Mews care home is part of Pathways Care Group, managed by Salutem Healthcare, a major provider of specialist, personalised, residential care for adults and young people with a variety of complex care needs, including those with learning disabilities, autism, mental health disorders and physical disabilities.

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