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Tenovus Sing For Life - Research study

Nichola Gale, Dr Stephanie Enright, Dr Robert van Deursen

School of Healthcare studies

Cardiff University

Sing for life choir 1

In January 2010 Tenovus Cancer Care,in partnership with the motivation and team building company Sing and Inspire, set up a choir for people affected by cancer to determine if this could act as an alternative support group.

To determine whether the choir actually improved the lives of the choir members, Tenovus Cancer Care worked together with a team from the School of Healthcare Studies at Cardiff University to measure their health and wellbeing before, during and at the end of the choir's initial 3 month pilot period.

Despite being carried out over a relatively short period of time, the evaluation of the pilot study showed that the choir brought about statistically significant improvements in social function, mental health and even a reduction in perceived pain in the choristers. It also reduced depression and anxiety in those that reported suffering from these conditions prior to taking part in the choir.

These results and the personal testimonies that we have collected from the members of the choir showed that a choir can be an excellent support group. The group continued to perform as the Tenovus Sing For Life Choir, and in partnership with Sing and Inspire and Cardiff University we were able to secure Big Lottery funding to widen the project out across Wales. Now we have more than 15 choirs as part of our ongoing Sing with Us project.