Sunderland pop choir and African Caribbean group among art projects to get funding

Jennie Brewis and Laura Brewis at Fausto Coffee
Jennie Brewis and Laura Brewis at Fausto Coffee
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Sixteen local community groups have shared in more than £10,000 distributed by an award-winning arts and culture project.

The Cultural Spring, an Arts Council funded initiative working to increase participation in arts and culture on Wearside and South Tyneside, has awarded grants of up to £1,000 to groups as part of its Your Art project.

Fausto Coffee shop in Roker is one of the recipients in the latest round of funding, with a grant of £400.

Laura Brewis, who runs Fausto’s Book Club, said: “We’re starting a new choir, the Fausto Pop Choir, which will be led by Jennie Brewis, of the Cornshed Sisters.

“The idea came out of the small music group which used to meet at our old Fausto premises to play the ukulele - we wanted to do something bigger and better in our fantastic new location.

“Jennie was really keen to bring a pop choir to Sunderland as she has led a few choirs elsewhere and we’re both very passionate about the positive benefits of people taking part in the arts - singing in this case, but equally art, writing, reading, crafting or performing.”

Other Sunderland recipients of Your Art support include: A690 Youth Initiative (£400); African Caribbean Community Association (£800); CHANCE in Hendon (£900); Ford, Pallion and Millfield Community Development Project (£400); Gateway North East in Hetton (£400); Headway Wearside (£978); FODI (£1,000); The Crafty Guys and Dolls in Southwick (£310) and Wearside Stroke Group (£967).

Over the past three years, the Cultural Spring project has invested nearly more than £70,000 in local communities through the Your Art scheme.