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Birmingham and Solihull Mental health NHS Foundation Trust
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Wellbeing Choirs help to light up Solihull!

Published: 05/11/2014

Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust is helping to light up Solihull when its two Wellbeing Community Choirs take part in the annual switch-on of the town’s Christmas decorations. 

The choirs will be taking part in the celebrations in Mell Square on Saturday, 22 November and will be singing Christmas themed songs before the switching on ceremony at 5.30pm. After the big switch-on spectators will have the chance to sing-a-long to some festive favourites.

The first Wellbeing Community Choir was set up in 2009, thanks to Trust charitable funding, and is made up of people with mental ill health, carers, friends, community members and staff.

Choir

Since its foundation the choir has performed at many community and Trust events and in 2010 hit a high note by being named Choir of the Day in the heats of the BBC Choir of the Year competition. The singers followed this up in 2011 by cutting a CD of their most popular songs.

At the beginning of this year a second Wellbeing Choir was founded in Chelmsley Wood and together the two choirs have around 70 singers who rehearse weekly under the guidance of musical director Martin Trotman. 
 
Jo Neale, head of performing and creative arts at the Trust, said: “Singing has many important benefits such as boosting emotional wellbeing, morale and confidence, as well as the joy of participating in a meaningful activity that brings pleasure to other people.

“The Wellbeing Choirs also provide a positive environment for members to socialise and develop friendships and play an important role in breaking down the stigma and discrimination that surrounds mental health.” 

The choirs are now hard at work rehearsing for their performance at the Solihull switch-on.