Grant for Milton Keynes group which offers interactive music sessions to support Afghan refugee families

A project offering interactive music classes for refugee Afghan families in Milton Keynes has been given a welcome boost thanks to MK Community Foundation.

By Olga Norford
Wednesday, 15th June 2022, 10:30 am

Members of Cha Char Chimps have been visiting a hotel which houses refugee families to run music sessions to help children with language and social skills.

The children and their families come together in a communal area with the group using props and puppets, alongside music and bubbles to entertain and support their English language skills.

Sasha Austin is an English teacher who has worked with Cha Char Chimps for nine years. She said: “Cha Char Chimps run interactive music sessions for 0-5 year olds and are always looking for ways to support our local community. Our ethos is to support parents, as well as children, with wellbeing and mental health at the heart of what we do.

Sessions run by Cha Char Chimps help support refugee children and their mothers with language and social skills

"I have been running the sessions since September, initially through the local children's centre, but council funding was stopped in February so we continued on a voluntary basis.

"In April Cha Char Chimps applied for a grant of £750. This was agreed by the MK Community Foundation. It will fund resources and time for the sessions as well as supplying bags for the children to keep, full of sensory music toys. The children will also receive a copy of the Hungry Caterpillar book and finger puppets made by an MK resident after a social media appeal.”

“The sessions take place in a communal area in the hotel once a week and will continue until the end of August when we hope to receive further funding to continue.”