Music for Dementia Fund by the National Academy for Social Prescribing

New funding to be made available for dementia projects harnessing the ‘Power of Music’.

As the UK-wide champions of ‘social prescribing’, National Academy for Social Prescribing (NASP) is proud to be leading a project in partnership with The Utley Foundation, which will fundsthe Music for Dementia campaign and which has announced a £1 million donation to kickstart the investment partnership. NASP will be seeking to secure up to £10 million in funding in total ahead of the programme’s official launch, slated for later this year.

This announcement comes in the wake of a major new report – Power of Music, launched by UK Music and Music for Dementia, which sets out a blueprint calling on government, health, care, music, philanthropy and third sectors to invest in and capitalise on the power of music.

The programme hopes to address some of the points raised in the report. Funding will be pulled from a variety of sectors and delivered at a hyperlocal level. As the owner and facilitator of this investment model, NASP will be well placed to act as a conduit between these two groups – grassroots project delivery and policy making – and will be able to gather evidence of the impact of these projects, feeding back to key stakeholders.

With dementia numbers rising, grassroots, community based solutions are imperative to improve the quality of life for people across the country.

An estimated 209,600 people will develop dementia this year, which will cost the UK £34.7 billion, more than the cost of cancer and chronic heart disease combined. This does not include the hidden costs paid for by people living with dementia and their families.

Music therapy is a proven solution to this ever increasing problem, with research showing that it is the best type of therapy for reducing the behavioral and psychological symptoms of dementia. Not only does it improve quality of life, it can also reduce agitation and the need for medication in 67% of people with dementia. People like Greg who contributed to the Power of Music report.

Greg is retired, and has been caring for his wife who has Alzheimer’s for 10 years. Together, they took part in group singing sessions run by a local university. The difference it made was remarkable.

Greg said: “What I witnessed at these sessions was quite amazing, really, people could be transformed by music, they come alive again.”

James Sanderson, CEO of NASP said: “At NASP we really believe in the power of social prescribing: supporting people to connect to information, the arts, nature, and physical activity to support their health and wellbeing. As we evolve as an organisation, are always looking for ways in which we can facilitate the kind of activity we know really works.

“There are benefits to living in an ageing society, but it unfortunately also means that we are seeing an increase in the number of people living with complex conditions such as dementia. As the Power of Music report demonstrates, music can have a truly transformational effect on people living with dementia. With this fund, we hope to make the ‘Power of Music’ more widely available to everyone.”

Find out more via the NASP website –

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