The Big Sing

This project has three main strands, which have come from the feedback we received when consulting with young people on their enjoyment of group singing and instrumentals lessons during The BIG Tour and BIG Album Project, and from a new partnership established with The Music Box, a state of the art facility within Broomhouse, which is seeking to engage further with the local community:

1. The BIG Sing:
Regular singing opportunities over 12 months for up to 60 children aged 5 - 18 and their families. This takes the form of three discrete singing groups of up to 20 children: Junior Primary, Senior Primary and Secondary Choirs. In each group there will be 10 weekly singing opportunities during each school term in 2009, with special events including:

  • The BIG Sing Nights - where young people bring their family along to get involved and to enjoy the music
  • Special guest singing coaches from the Scottish music industry
  • 4 Scratch choir performances where other young people participate in with Senior and/or Secondary choir, based in local and other Scottish music venues, supported by a professional band
  • A Christmas Concert featuring all three choirs and the percussion group in December 2009

2. Monday Night Is Music Night
Regular music making opportunities for up to 36 children aged 10 - 18, with 10 weeks of tuition in guitar, keyboards and drums/percussion (one block of 12 children per term) during the school terms. This would allow development for those young people who began learning instruments during The BIG Tour and BIG Album Project, with opportunities for beginners and intermediate learners.

3. The BIG Studio
Opportunities for 8 young people aged 15 - 18 to learn studio-recording techniques from an industry professional. This block would take place over 10 weeks of one school term, using facilities in The Music Box, Stevenson College, Edinburgh.

For the young people involved, the outcomes will be increased confidence, motivation, self-discipline, emotional and social wellbeing, and development of their singing, rehearsing, performing and recording skills. The project will contribute to the participating young people's social, educational and creative development.

In total, the project will offer opportunities for up to 243 young people. There will be spaces for up to 104 young people from Broomhouse and the surrounding areas - 20 in each of the three choirs, 36 in music making and 8 in The BIG Studio. Additionally, we intend to maintain links with the songwriting network established in The BIG Tour and BIG Album Project by incorporating the songs of young people from Livingston, Broomhouse and Ardnamurchan & Morvern into the repertoire of the choirs, and by encouraging the participation of these young songwriters in special scratch choir events and as audience members for performances. We will offer opportunities for up to 120 additional young people over 4 scratch choir events in2009/10.

The BIG Tour and BIG Album Project


The BIG Tour and BIG Album Project is a songwriting and music making project for 10 - 15 year olds based in Broomhouse, Livingston, Strontian and the surrounding areas, supported by an award of 25,826 from the Scottish Arts Council's Youth Music Initiative. The BIG Tour and BIG Album Project aims to build confidence, self-esteem, motivation and self-discipline through the process of music making, songwriting, rehearsals, performance and recording opportunities led by Edinburgh-based singer/songwriter Kim Edgar ( The first stage of the project has already taken place in Broomhouse, with six months of music making/songwriting opportunities for young people.

The second stage, where young people in Broomhouse, Livingston and Strontian will all take part in intensive Songwriting Workshops in each of the three locations across Scotland.

Collaboration and communication between the young people will be supported by an interactive songwriting forum provided by The young people in each area will work towards a local performance of their songs, backed by a band of professional musicians including Karine Polwart, Mattie Foulds and Future Pilot AKA and supported by four young Music Trainees from Broomhouse.

In Broomhouse, the BIG Gig will take place at The Music Box, Stevenson College at 7pm on Friday 15th August 2008. The BIG Gig will be part of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, and a limited number of tickets are available to interested members of the public, at 10. Tickets can be purchased from

Recordings from this and the other two gigs on The BIG Tour will be used to create a compilation entitled The BIG Album, which will be launched in Edinburgh on Saturday 4th October.

Here are some works in progress from young songwriters who are taking part in the BIG Tour and BIG Album Project.

Ryan - Don't Put Me Down (The BIG Project, Broomhouse)
Hannah - Falling (West Lothian Youth Action Project, Livingston)
Kerry - Believe In Yourself (The Sunart Centre, The Highland Council, Strontian)

Come back soon to hear the final recordings of these and other songs, performed live at The BIG Gig with a full band of professional musicians!

The GROW project

growing resilience, optimism & wellbeing


The Curriculum for Excellence challenges schools to identify opportunities to support the health and wellbeing of children and young people. Increasingly in Scotland, the enhancement of mental health within schools is being prioritised, and in particular, resilience is being identified as an important capacity in optimising the future development of successful learners, confident individuals, effective contributors and responsible citizens.

"Creating Confident Kids", a resource for developing nursery and primary school pupils' emotional and social competence, (currently under development as part of City Of Edinburgh Council's "Growing Confidence" project), aims to help children manage life and learning more effectively, with a whole-school community approach.

The GROW Project was designed to complement this initiative, with group work programmes for referred children who require support above and beyond the whole-school approach to resilience, optimism and wellbeing.

The GROW Project set out to enhance the emotional resilience, optimism and wellbeing of referred primary pupils, through programmes delivered, in or out of school, by community based youth projects across Edinburgh. Five Edinburgh-based voluntary organisations worked in partnership in planning, delivering and evaluating The GROW Project, which has been undertaken by pupils in thirteen primary schools across the city.

After the completion of the Programme, referrers were asked to identify areas of development for the referred child. Here are a selection of their responses:

  • "Y clearly enjoyed this project. He always looked forward to it each week. Y told me at the end that he had achieved all 3 of his targets and was very proud of himself."
  • "K can at times have low self-esteem which can prevent him from coping with mistakes. The GROW Project and other support structures have helped enormously with this."
  • "There has been significant improvement in making and maintaining friendships recently."
  • "D sometimes gets upset and finds it difficult to regain composure. There has been a massive improvement in this area."
  • "I am delighted that N has formed friendships with some of his peers.he is even more delighted!"
  • "Since embarking on The GROW Project.he has established friendships, confidence. I wish he could have more of this kind of input!"

Comments from parents/carers about the project have included:

  • "Is learning to try new things.would normally not even give it a go.really enjoyed The GROW Project and taught him to be more aware of his feelings and ours. Allowed him to try new experiences and not shy away from them."
  • "Since he started this group he has come out of his shell, and he talks a lot. I think there should be more groups like this! Thank you very much!"

Video Production Course


Learning to use video editing equipment and software enabled young people to amalgamate the many different video clips and photographs taken over their time in The BIG Project and to document key moments in both their own and their peers' lives into one short film. Uploading and editing film clips, they produced a permanent record of their history and achievements at The BIG Project and now have something they can show to friends and family. Premiered at The BIG Project's AGM, this short film can be viewed by following this link

What You Looking At?

What are you looking at  

The Project was invited to participate in this city wide poster campaign which set out to change the way in which adults perceive young people. Six posters were produced each portraying a group of young people in a positive light by publicising their achievements. The young people from The BIG Project were linked with The Grove Park initiative which The Project had been involved in the previous year and which resulted in being awarded an Evening News Young Edinburgh Award and a Nancy Ovens Award for Play.

BIG Radio

Big Radio  Big Radio

The BIG Project, in conjunction with Community Education and Telford College created it's own radio show, BIG RADIO. There are lots of radio stations on air, but the unique thing about this show is that the show was researched, produced, edited and presented by young people for young people from the Broomhouse area, and includes music, competitions interviews with local people and information about activities for young people over the summer. Fresh young talent from Broomhouse informs, educates and inspires with their unique brand of music and chat including the world premiere of Broomhouse Primary Schools latest release "Broomhouse is Brilliant!"


mural  mural

This project was developed to engage with an excluded group of young males aged 12-18 who were known to the police and the community as offenders. The group were causing serious problems within Broomhouse and in particular Broomhouse Grove which at the time was known by residents as Little Bosnia. Working in partnership with WHALE Arts, and the owners of Broomhouse Market The BIG Project secured funding from The City of Edinburgh Council's Economic Development department to work on creating a mural in Broomhouse Market as positive development in working to make Broomhouse look and feel a safer place. Over a number of weeks they set about designing a mural that represented their community. The group worked with the artist Matthew Franklin to design a few images for the mural and the community groups and individuals were invited to the wall one Wednesday afternoon to discuss the images and decide on the one that would be created into a large scale mural. The boys then painted it in the heart of the community at Broomhouse Market. It is an exciting piece of work which brought many parts of the community together. It still stands today!