The healing powers of music

Drumming workshop

Hypnotic rhythms and mesmerizing  sounds have been flowing at the Genesis Gateway Centre, as two of our Life Skills courses bring healing to the soul. Clients have been discovering the mental health benefits music can bring, with a drumming workshop and a therapeutic music group.

The weekly djembe drumming workshop is led by multi-skilled artist Wes Sandford, who first encountered the Genesis Trust as part of his recovery from addiction and mental health problems.

Wes spent eight months in rehab, and after moving to Bath for a fresh start, Genesis Trust supported him as a fine artist and musician.

“Genesis has been essential to my survival,” says Wes, “and it’s great to give back to clients who have similar struggles.”

The workshops are proving popular, and one drummer, Frances, explained how Wes’s encouragement has helped her:

“The first time I came I was having a really bad day, but I was free to let my light shine. It felt like my whole body was smiling, and I got rid of the rubbish.”

A vast array of different musical instruments are laid out on the floor at the Gateway Centre as Valerie Winning Hart prepares to lead Open Music, a music therapy session for Genesis clients which takes place fortnightly. Valerie has a lifetime of experience as a musician and teacher,  and now she’s qualifying as a music therapist. Her aim is to enable clients to express their emotions using music where words can be hard to find.

A growing body of research suggests that music can help with a range of mental and even physical health problems, and it’s hoped that funding will be secured to allow the drumming workshop and this valuable therapy to continue at Genesis.

See here for our latest Life Skills timetable.

Musical instruments for music therapy

Open Music instruments at Life Skills