A Together With Music Story:
Graham & Nikki
Intergenerational Music Making:
Training at Runwood Care Homes
After the loss of his wife and the social isolation and loneliness suffered through the lockdown periods, Graham’s family encouraged him to attend a Together with Music (TWM) workshop. The musical workshop became a lifeline for the former primary school teacher, but true to his character he seized the opportunity to help others.
Making Intergenerational Connections
Whilst sharing their feelings of loneliness and the importance of connection, Graham built a wonderful connection with fellow music lover, eight-year-old Radhika (Nikki).
At the time, Nikki was a year 4 student keen to professionally be trained in music and dance. Wise beyond her years, Nikki contributed to discussions around loneliness and the importance of connection.
Following a nomination by IMM, Graham was recognised on the BBC One Show with a ‘One Big Thank You’ award for his passion to improve the mental wellbeing of children and older people through music.
Graham and Nikki further cemented their connection together during TwM’s song writing tour and hope that their shared passion for music will inspire more intergenerational friendships and connections.
Graham now volunteers for TwM leading a weekly music hub at Trinity Methodist Church in Woking.
“Dad is a bit of an epic human being. He has given a lifetime of public service with no
expectation of reward. My Mum was his rock and when she passed away, we were
concerned as a family as to how he would manage without her. After a period of profoundmourning, he was incredibly brave in seizing new opportunities. Lockdown set him back, but IMM was invaluable in helping him and so many like him to emerge out of isolation.”
Emily Abbott, Project Director, Together with Music said:
“Graham came along to the first live Together with Music workshop we were able to hold after lockdown. He instantly took on the role of helping people of all ages to get the most out of the sessions. He would wait for the bus to arrive from the care home to help the residents off and find a seat and take time to chat to the children helping to calm their anxieties and boost their confidence. Graham has become a one of our most highly valued volunteers and perfectly demonstrates the benefits of connecting the young and the not so young to reduce isolation through music.”