4 July 2021
By Mary Bermingham
Music Generation Cork City have expressed their delight at being one of the chosen beneficiaries of the inaugural RTÉ Toy Show Appeal.
For the last decade Music Generation, with the support of Cork Education and Training Board, Cork City Council, the HSE, UCC, MTU and a range of other local and national partners, have been providing music learning and participation opportunities to children and young people up to the age of 18 with a community-focused approach to ensure children at the risk of exclusion receive inclusive and accessible education through music.
For their winning proposal, Music Generation proposed to build on their experience gained with community-based music groups and pledged to initiate a year-long research and development project to partner with groups that work with marginalised children.
Their research proposed to do the following:
Develop and implement action research projects in schools with children with autism/on the autism spectrum
Develop and implement research partnership with the STAR project, Cork’s education resource workers for children and young people from the Roma and Traveller communities to address gaps in music provision and identify barriers to participation in existing music programmes
Action research to identify and address ongoing barriers to music participation for children in Direct Provision and amongst migrant communities
Speaking in relation to the programme proposal, Margaret O’Sullivan, co-ordinator of Music Generation Cork City said:
“Working on the ground in communities in partnership we have learned that combining action research and CPD for musician educators, staff and partners, creates opportunities for children and young people to inform and shape research on their own needs and perspectives.”
“We recognise that children and young people all have their own unique experiences, needs, and that their creative aspirations are reflective of multiplicities of experience within and between cultures, communities, individuals, families, and social groupings.
“We work hard to develop programmes according to local need and context by working in partnership with community-based music groups to provide responsive and adaptive context-based music learning and participation opportunities,” she said.
Speaking in relation to the funding announcement, Ms. O’Sullivan expressed her delight to have been selected to receive funding:
She said: “Music Generation Cork City includes a huge web of people in Cork City and in our wider network so the honour of being selected for this funding is very meaningful for us, given the special place the Toy Show has in all our hearts and the generosity of the Irish public towards the appeal. The award will help us to create more inclusive, creative projects from which we will learn and share to ensure that children and young people can have access to music making and learning experiences that work for them in spite of all the barriers in their way. We are thrilled!”
The inaugural Toy Show Appeal funding is expected to benefit over 630,000 children and family members across Ireland, with the standard for funding and grant applications described as “incredibly high” by the Community Funding Foundation of Ireland, who processed all applications.
A spokesperson for RTE added that the Toy Show Appeal would return this year, and that they “hoped that over the years to come, it would help many more children in lots of different ways.”