£5,000 Awarded to Orkney’s Music Instrument Bank

music imageOrkney’s  Reel Life Foundation is celebrating after being awarded a grant of £5,000 to fund its Music Instrument Bank, as part of rural energy provider Calor’s annual funding scheme.

The aim of the Calor Rural Community Fund is to give off-grid communities the chance to gain grants for projects that will improve local life. With a total fund of £50,000, this year the scheme offered funding for 21 different projects, with prize pots ranging from £1,000 up to £5,000.

The Reel Life Foundation is a charity set up to support and promote the distinctive musical traditions of Orkney. The charity recently started a musical instrument bank project after receiving some donations, however there is a need to expand the collection due to demand.

The Calor grant will be used to provide instruments such as violins, several keyboards, acoustic and electric guitars, mandolins, accordion, bodhran, banjos, harmonicas and melodeons. The instruments will need robust protective storage cases and ancillary equipment such as straps, tuners and finger picks. Some instruments also require different sizes to enable children and small adults to play them.

Hazel Wrigley, Chairman and Trustee at the Reel Life Foundation said:

“The aim is to create a musical instrument bank with a good range of instruments that may be borrowed free by Orcadian residents for a time limited period, enabling people to see if they are suited to an instrument prior to purchase. This instrument bank will allow our charity to promote this initiative, by holding ‘taster sessions’ run by volunteers within the parishes and more remote isles.”

“Calor’s generosity means that we can continue to promote the Orcadian music traditions to all by improving accessibility and reducing economic barriers, helping to enrich the lives of others.”

Paul Blacklock, Calor’s Corporate Affairs Manager added:

“As a rural energy provider, we understand that country living can be challenging and access to community facilities can be especially difficult.

“We set up the Calor Rural Community Fund to be able to give something back to these rural communities, and this year we were inundated by a number of deserving projects. We’re delighted to award the Reel Life Foundation with £5,000 and look forward to seeing the Orkney Isles Music Instrument Bank in action.

“This year’s scheme was so successful we plan to relaunch it again in 2019, so keep an eye out on our website and social media channels for updates as we hope to be funding more fantastic projects near you!”

For further information, please visit www.calor.co.uk/communityfund.

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