'HELPING VULNERABLE YOUNG PEOPLE FIND THEIR VOICE'
Project 21 have been mentoring young singers and musicians since 1999. We've found value and purpose in working with students suffering with mental health issues like anxiety and depression. Recent research suggests that as many as 1 in 6 young people will experience an anxiety condition at some point in their lives. Project 21 conduct music sessions with creative students experiencing social anxiety and shyness, low self-esteem, worry and panic attacks, helping to boost their confidence through music and performance.
Having a creative outlet to express emotions and passions has yielded overwhelmingly positive results. Some students have even progressed to perform solo performances at live events.
Example student Caitlin:
Mission of Project 21 Outreach
To create a professional musical outlet for talented Secondary Education students.
To conduct workshops in schools, forming choirs and developing solo artists
To invite talented students to express their talents performing at live events
Objectives of Project 21 Outreach
Use local contacts in schools to identify musically talented Young Students
Fund coaching sessions for students with experienced music industry professionals
Deliver professional live shows of an exceptionally high standard in schools and other live music venues
Christmas concert at Walsall Studio School:
September 2019 was a significant month for me. It was the 40th anniversary of my first professional tour when, as a young inexperienced eighteen year old drummer, I was invited to play for one of my idols, the Grammy award winning artist and former member of the legendary group Andrae Crouch And The Disciples, Danniebelle Hall.
This was the start of my life in music outside of the four walls of my Father's church in Walsall. A church that I am forever grateful to have grown up in.
In the forty years since I have been blessed to meet and work with many many people including Gospel music legend the late great Andrae Crouch himself and his twin sister Sandra, who I am still good friends with today.
As well as playing music professionally I've also had the privilege of working with young people in schools and in prisons, (Young Offenders Institutions) coaching, encouraging, and mentoring. This has opened my eyes to see the many challenges our young people face, such as gang violence, anxiety, depression, as well as many other mental health issues such as anxiety and depression.
I have to say, playing and touring with nine Grammy award winning artists has been an honour and a privilege, however nothing has given me more joy than helping a young person to see past their issues and discover the God give talent that lies within them. This has given them a springboard to be able to overcome.
For example, I was recently moved to receive this letter from a seventeen year old former student. It read;
Hey Carl! I just wanted to let you know that the shy little student you knew before is performing soon at a football stadium next month! And then I’m performing and singing in a musical that I had to audition for ? I just want to thank you ever so much for always pushing me and believing in me when I didn’t even believe in myself!
I just thought I’d let you know because you were there for me all the time and with my depression you were there for me too!
I have to tell you that I beat depression and I’m happy as ever and I know I mean so much to a lot of people! My grandad has been gone a year this month and it has been really hard but I know he’s proud of me and he always will be! Thank you again Carl it means so much to ME for how much you’ve done for me over the two years of knowing you x
So why am I writing this? I am setting up a charity under the name of my band, Project 21, to do exactly what I have been doing along with my friends and colleagues from the music industry. Through my many contacts I am in a great position to expand this important work of reaching vulnerable young people. Now, I am not saying that this is going to solve the whole problem, but certainly will make a difference.
So, in the next few months I am planning to launch the charity by doing something very very special. I am putting together some of the finest musicians and singers in the country for a music extravaganza!! And to help me launch it I have invited two great friends to be my special guests. Bill Maxwell and Sandra Crouch!!
Bill was Andrae Crouch's drummer and producer for two decades. He also played and produced albums for Keith Green, The Winnans, Bebe and Cece Winans...the list goes on. He has also worked with artists such as Bob Dylan, Luther Vandross, Paul Simon, Stevie Wonder Country music legend Glen Campbell and many others!
Sandra Crouch is twin sister to Andrae Crouch, founder member of The Disciples, and a Grammy Award winning artist in her own right. I reached out to these two wonderful heroes of mine and they have agreed to fly over from Los Angeles to join us for this incredible event which will be announced shortly.
To make this charity launch and special event happen we are in need sponsors, to support the vision.
Thank you. Let's make a difference!!