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Demand for mental health support through Music Minds Matter has nearly doubled in 2021



 

Help Musicians’ Music Minds Matter service has seen demand nearly double in 2021, reflecting the impact the pandemic continues to have on musicians. Between 1 January and 30 September 2021, musicians accessing one-on-one counselling increased by 94.4% compared to the same period in 2020.

Music Minds Matter was expanded in April 2021 in reaction to a survey the charity carried out that found 87% of musicians had seen their mental health deteriorate since the start of the pandemic.

Music Minds Matter is Help Musicians’ 24/7 mental health support line, staffed by accredited therapists who can refer musicians to deeper therapeutic support via the charity’s longstanding clinical partner the British Association for Performing Arts Medicine (BAPAM). The expansion in April added a national network of local support groups and signposting to relevant advice and support. Music Minds Matter can offer these services thanks in large part to a funding package from UK music licensing company PPL worth £300,000 across three years, which will ensure more musicians than ever before can access much needed one-to-one counselling and therapeutic support.

Claire Cordeaux, Chief Executive Officer of BAPAM, said:
“Musicians’ mental health needs have always been higher than the general population, but over the last 18 months we have seen a significant increase in requests for mental health support caused by a combination of financial and career uncertainty, loss of identity and difficulty in getting access to mainstream mental health services. The challenge of being performance ready after this period should also not be underestimated. We are delighted to be working with Help Musicians and PPL on this important project. Our clinical specialists all have experience of the performing arts and are well placed to deliver therapeutic support and to liaise with specialist services where necessary.”

Peter Leathem, Chief Executive Officer of PPL, said:
“These figures make it clear that many in the music industry are still feeling the impact of a very difficult past 18 months. So as live music returns, nightclubs re-open and we return to offices and public spaces, we must continue to support those who are still in need. Music Minds Matter is playing a crucial role in this and we are very proud to help the service continue to deliver excellent care and expand its offer.” 

James Ainscough, Chief Executive of Help Musicians, said:
“It’s so exciting to see live music gradually return, but the rising number of musicians seeking counselling in 2021 highlights that the mental health impact of the pandemic is far from over. In what can already be a very challenging profession, the added pressures of the past 18-months and the uncertainty of what lies ahead while careers are re-built, has created the perfect storm for musicians and their teams who are battling to maintain their mental health. The expansion of Music Minds Matter continues in earnest and we need as much support as we can get for this vital service to the entire music industry. PPL’s support is crucial to ensuring we can meet the rising demand and we are incredibly grateful for their generosity and leadership.”

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