Bandmates commences in Greater Bendigo

The City of Greater Bendigo in partnership with VicHealth has commenced the popular Bandmates Victoria initiative in Greater Bendigo.

During 2020 Bandmates Victoria - Bendigo will match people with disability or mental health issues aged between 18 and 25, with a volunteer who likes the same music, so they can access venues and enjoy live music together. 

City of Greater Bendigo Community Partnerships Manager Steven Abbott said while Bandmates has been operating in Melbourne for some time, this is the first time the program has been implemented locally.

“Often people with disability and or mental health issues are unable to attend live music or entertainment events unless they are with parents or support workers,” Mr Abbott said.

“Bandmates Victoria - Bendigo is all about pairing up like-minded music lovers to provide the support needed to share great music experiences.

“Once a Bandmate and a Volunteer have been paired up its up to them to decide where they want to go and what music they want to listen to.

“It’s a really great inclusive concept that connects music enthusiasts.  It also works with local music venues to ensure they are accessible and inclusive for everyone.

“The program creates solid foundations that facilitate social access, build community connections and enhance wellbeing through accessing popular and independent arts and culture. 

“The program also provides industry development for local music venues and staff to help them feel confident and capable in understanding disability and diversity in their workplace.”

Anyone who is interested in being a Bandmate or a Volunteer should contact the City’s Bandmates Project Officer Faye Van Der Paal on 54346000. 

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