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Christian Eede
22 September 2022, 19:03

Help Musicians launches new mental health-focused charity, Music Minds Matter

The single-focus charity aims to help people across the music industry as they continue to navigate the post-pandemic landscape

Help Musicians launches new mental health-focused charity, Music Minds Matter

UK charity Help Musicians has relaunched its subsidiary organisation, Music Minds Matter, as a single-focus charity devoted to the issue of mental health.

Its aim has been refocused with the purpose of helping people across the music industry as they continue to navigate the post-pandemic landscape, the stress of Brexit-related bureaucracy, the cost of living crisis and individual mental health issues. 

The charity has been set up with a new board of trustees that is separate from that of Help Musicians, and takes in talent from across the music industry, including organisations such as Warner Music, United Talent Agency and Amazon Music.

The board will be chaired by Silvia Montello, who is CEO of Association For Electronic Music (AFEM) and an existing Help Musicians Trustee. According to press materials, the board will "provide insight, focus and strategic leadership to drive awareness and engagement to the whole music industry and help improve access to necessary mental health support". They will also, a press release explains, ensure that all fundraised income is directed solely towards Music Minds Matter's mental health mission.

James Ainscough, Chief Executive at Help Musicians, said: "Since Music Minds Matter launched in 2017, we have seen the need for mental health support continue to grow year-on-year. Musicians and those who work in music have been through an incredibly difficult time during the pandemic. And, sadly, coming out the other side is proving just as challenging, if not more. So the time is right to set up Music Minds Matter as a single-focus charity.

"With the full backing of the Help Musicians team and resources, the Music Minds Matter Board will have the freedom to drive forward our work on mental health, so we can reach more of those who need our support, and build vital partnership right across the music industry. Silvia and the new board of trustees bring the wealth of knowledge, understanding and passion needed to guide Music Minds Matter in this new and exciting phase and I look forward to working with them."

Silvia Montello added: "Having worked in music my entire career, I have sadly seen and experienced first-hand the devastating impact on the mental health of too many great colleagues, friends and artists. Music brings such joy to so many people; we need to ensure that no-one involved in creating and sharing it across the music-loving community is left to suffer the effects of stressful, unhealthy and often precarious livelihoods, and is able to share in that joy and to thrive in their own daily endeavours."

Music Minds Matter initially launched in 2017 as a 24/7 mental health support line for all who work in music across the UK. It has since evolved to include peer support groups, self-care sessions and a music-focused mental health guidance website.

Find out more about Music Minds Matter here.

The relaunch of Music Minds Matter follows on from research carried out by Help Musicians late last year that found that a third of professional musicians were still not earning money from their work at the time following the COVID-19 pandemic.