Press Release! Press Release! Press Release!
A bold Mini Commission music video from Lochside Connections with Upon Broad Shoulders
The members, volunteers and staff at Lochside Connections have created their own song about what their Meeting Centre means to them and their quality of life.
Over a number of months, they have collaborated with local music maker David Falconer to capture their feelings about the Meeting Centre and share them with the world in “Upon Broad Shoulders” – their very own music video.
The idea for the video first emerged earlier in 2023, when one of the members suggested song writing as an activity that Centre members might like to get involved in. This suggestion was enthusiastically received.
By good fortune, the song writing idea emerged at the same time as the Centre had an opportunity to apply to the Bold Project for funding to create something that contributed to building a bold dementia community in Scotland. The Bold Project is a national initiative that develops and supports social leaders working in the dementia field.
The funding application was successful and so began the creation of “Upon Broad Shoulders”.
David Falconer was engaged to work with the Lochside Connections members to create the song. He visited the Centre on several occasions and involved the members in all aspects of the song writing process.
Meeting Centre Manager Laura Whitton told us,
“David started out by getting to know the members and finding out about their musical tastes. He then moved on to generating lyrics for the song, inviting members to explore their feelings about the Meeting Centre and the difference it makes to their lives. From there, David took all of the ideas he had gathered and began to put them together in a song.
Though-out that song writing phase, David came back to the Centre to check things out with the members, at all times making sure that they were happy with content and that it was still their song.”
When everyone was happy with the song, the next stage was to create the video to go with it. Again, this was done in a way that involved as many people as possible at the Centre. Under David’s direction, the staff and members recorded the song. Centre volunteers then created a video to accompany it. The video uses images of activities at the Centre to complement the lyrics and demonstrate just how much enjoyment members have in each other’s company.
According to Laura Whitton, having everyone involved continued to be of central importance to the project.
“None of us at the Centre would describe ourselves as confident performers, but “Upon Broad Shoulders” was created by the members and we all thought that it would carry a much stronger message if it was performed by those whose feelings it encapsulates. And with a bit of support and patience, we’ve produced something that we all like and are proud of.”
The experience of making the song and the video is one which the members have all enjoyed. They were a bit sceptical about their ability to create something that others would want to hear – but now that they’ve seen the final product, everyone is very pleased.
And more importantly, “Upon Broad Shoulders” captures and conveys something important -the difference that Lochside Connections is making. Being part of our Centre is helping members to live well with their dementia and to enjoy new friendships and experiences. They feel they are part of something at the Centre and feel much more able to face new challenges as part of a wider community.”
Lochside Connections is one of four dementia Meeting Centres now operating in Angus. Like all Meeting Centres, Lochside Connections aims to help its members, all of whom are living with dementia, to live as well as possible with their condition.
It has now been open since May 2022 and is operating at full capacity, offering a varied programme of activities for its members three days a week. The Centre also works with family carers and operates a regular carers’ group offering support and information.
Laura Whitton told us.
“When we opened Lochside Connections, we believed that there was a need for a Meeting Centre in Forfar and the last 18 months have proved us to be correct. Our membership has just kept on growing to the point at which we are running at capacity.
The support we have received from the local community has been fantastic – whether that be in the form of financial donations or people contributing to the programme by sharing their time and expertise.
We honestly couldn’t have imagined the Centre becoming so successful so soon.”
You can watch “Upon Broad Shoulders” here!
For further information about this Lochside Connections Meeting Centre please visit www.lochsideconnections.co.uk