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The Lily Calvert Musical Care Training Program Update

January 12, 2021Priyanka Calvert

In January of 2020 we launched the Lily Calvert Musical Care Training program in partnership with Very Special Kids Hospice in Malvern. 

Designed to train health care professions, carers and volunteers in paediatric palliative care, the program aimed to teach participants to incorporate elements of music therapy into their daily care of children with life limiting illnesses. 

This is because research and evidence shows that the use of music in medical and care settings can support the care of patients including to help to create calming environments for the administration of procedures, medicine and food and basic patient and hospice care. Although this is well documented, in practice very few staff and volunteers have a good understanding of how to use music in hospice settings. 

LCF provided a grant of $15,000 to develop training materials and deliver them across Very Special Kids Hospice in a pilot program. Developed with the assistance of music therapist and palliative care experts across the country the program was set to roll out at the start of the covid-19 pandemic in early 2020 and would include training materials and resources, as well as a buddy program allowing staff and volunteers to work one-on-one with a music therapist in the VSK Hospice.

Unfortunately this could not occur due to the pandemic conditions. As such the program has been put on hold for this year and will become an online training resource. 

Our vision, when we launched the Lily Calvert Musical Care program 12 months ago, was that we would have had solid outcomes to report on by now. However the COVID-19 impacts meant we were unable to run all the activities planned for the Lily Calvert Musical Care program.

We are looking forward to getting the Lily Calvert Musical Care program back on-track in 2021 and we will be finalise the Lily Calvert Musical Care training program and resources for staff and volunteers. VSK’s music therapist team will then roll out the training onsite, in person, during March 2021 to staff. Then after the staff training there will be opportunities for buddy sessions and mentoring to support staff to implement their learnings to use music with children.

In-person training will also be organised for volunteers. VSK will also provide support and follow-up to ensure volunteers feel confident top include music in their interactions with children in the Hospice.

We are excited for the program to unfold and we will continue to up date you as it rolls out. 


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