A crowdfunding appeal has been launched to enable a well-loved music project at Newcastle’s Freeman Hospital to continue into next year.

The Lullaby Hour entertains youngsters and parents on the hospital’s Children’s Heart Unit. By delivering gentle music and song in the early evening, the project helps children settle down to sleep and creates a ‘bedtime’ atmosphere.

The Children’s Heart Unit is one of the UK’s leading units for children and babies with heart and lung conditions. The patients – who are often very poorly, in pain and emotionally distressed – can struggle to sleep at first, which is why The Lullaby Hour is so helpful.

The Lullaby Hour – delivered by the national charity Music in Hospitals & Care – has been running the relaxing singing sessions on the unit since September. The sessions have proved a big hit, but the charity needs to raise more money in order to continue the project.

The crowdfund campaign – which will be run as part of the Crowdfund Newcastle Culture programme – needs to raise of a total of £6,720 by 26th January. If £3,360 is pledged by the public, this will trigger match funding from Crowdfund Newcastle Culture, which will make up the rest.

Crowdfund Newcastle Culture has been made available by the Newcastle Culture Investment Fund, which is a grants programme run by Newcastle City Council and the Community Foundation for Tyne & Wear and Northumberland in partnership with Crowdfunder.

Alison Forbes, from Music in Hospitals & Care, said, “The music can help mums and dads in a very difficult time, providing them with cherished memories of their child laughing, singing and settling to sleep.”

“The Lullaby Hour sessions bring comfort to the children and their parents, as well as helping to create a sense of normality for them. One little girl’s heartrate actually lowered during the lullaby singing.”

“We really want pledgers to get behind this wonderful project that brings so much joy and happiness to so many people.”

Joanne Moore, activities coordinator on the Children’s Heart Unit, said, “We want Lullaby Hour to continue. It brings so much comfort and joy to the children and their parents.”

Cllr Kim McGuinness, Newcastle City Council’s Cabinet member for culture and communities, said, “It is activities like The Lullaby Hour that show the level of diverse art and cultural projects that are now being supported by Crowdfund Newcastle Culture.”

“Crowdfund campaigns are a great and increasingly popular way for groups and organisations to raise money for their projects.”

The Lullaby Hour campaign is being supported by the actress Kellie Bright, who has starred on EastEnders, The Archers and Strictly Come Dancing.

To pledge money for The Lullaby Hour, please go to www.crowdfunder.co.uk/lullabyhour.

Any Newcastle-based individuals, groups or projects who feel they might be eligible for crowdfunding can visit www.crowdfunder.co.uk/newcastle-culture.  

(Featured image courtesy of abbamouse, from Flickr Creative Commons)

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