The Amber Trust helps blind and partially sighted children across the UK who have a talent or love for music. Amber's vision is for blind and partially sighted children, including those with additional disabilities, to have the best possible chance to meet their musical needs and aspirations and fulfil their potential, We aim to support and enhance the lives of the 25,000 blind and partially sighted children in the UK, including those with additional disabilities, in their engagement with music, and to promote high quality music provision for all children and young people with a visual impairment.
Music really is of special importance to these young people. For some, learning to play an instrument or to sing, or simply being able to go to a concert, can add immeasurably to their lives. For others, many of whom have severe learning difficulties, music may offer a lifeline helping them to reach out in a dark and confusing world.
For all the children Amber supports, music has a significant impact. It not only gives them great joy, it encourages them to learn, boosts their confidence and helps them to share their thoughts and feelings with others, opening up a world of independence, fulfilment and hope for the future. With many blind children in the UK living in relative poverty, they suffer a double disadvantage. their families cannot afford to give them the musical experiences that can make such a difference to their lives.
The Amber Trust's core activity is providing Music Awards for individual blind and partially sighted children for:
We have also launched Little Amber and AmberPlus. Little Amber comprises a set of online resources that offer ideas for musical activities that families can do themselves with their child. AmberPlus offers a similar service for the families or carers of children and young people aged 5-18 who are visually impaired and have profound and multiple learning difficulties. In 2019 we launched the Music Makers Programme for Schools for groups of up to six visually impaired children and young people in special schools. In 2020 we launched a new music service for children with life-limiting neurodegenerative disease.