Music Generation Offaly/Westmeath is working with more than 3,700 young people, employs 25 local musicians, and is active in over 40 local schools.
These figures came to light as the programme’s development officer Margaret Broome presented a progress report to Westmeath councillors this week.
The project, which launched in June 2013, has gone from strength to strength since its inception, with its tutors now working with 3,708 young people aged from 5-18 years on a weekly basis - a significant proportion of the 20,000 youngsters that Music Generation engages with nationally.
Under its watch the Athlone Schools Orchestra now includes 40 members from both counties, while a youth project in Mullingar is also due to be extended to Athlone and Edenderry. An instrument bank is also proving extremely successful, with 330 youngsters benefiting from this facility. This initiative provides instruments on loan to schools and individual young musicians.
The number of musicians employed as tutors has almost tripled from nine to 25 since June, providing 148.5 hours of tuition per week. Music Generation Offaly/ Westmeath has also partnered with DIT in the creation of a new Level 7 qualification for music tutors.
The programme receives financial support from Westmeath and Offaly County Councils.