Eilidh’s Trust launches Covid recovery fund

Eilidh was a talented piper with the Sgoil Lionacleit Pipe Band. Photograph courtesy of Piping Press.

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A charity remembering teenage Barra piper Eilidh MacLeod has launched a new Covid recovery fund so her spirit can live on through music.

The scheme, which will support youth music groups across the whole of Scotland as the nation reopens after the pandemic, comes ahead of the fourth anniversary of the terrorist attack at Manchester Arena that claimed 14-year-old Eildih’s life along with 21 others.

The small grants from The Eilidh MacLeod Memorial Trust will be offered to help music groups prepare for the eventual move back to in-person teaching, group lessons, public performances and competitive events. Bids by groups for a share of the new funding pot need to be in by June 30 this year.

Eilidh’s Trust founder Suzanne White said: ‘Part of Eilidh’s ethos in life was to be a constant friend and to be there when others needed her. She was a caring and compassionate person who wanted nothing more than to make others feel loved and supported. As we mark four years since we lost our precious Eilidh, we want her spirit to live on through her love of music by offering a hand of friendship and support to young musicians.

‘We know that many music groups have had a tough time during lockdown and last year we supported several groups to ensure they could continue virtual teaching. As we are now starting to move out of lockdown and towards a greater degree of normality including face to face lessons and public performances, Eilidh’s Trust is keen to ensure youth music groups are supported through this transition.’

And she added: ‘We are keen to hear from groups of any musical genre from across Scotland that feel small grant support would help their students grow and flourish over the coming months.’

Since it started in 2018 the charity has been supporting music education for young people reflecting Eilidh’s own  musical ability and enjoyment of it.

Any youth music groups, complying with safeguarding and child protection rules, wanting to apply for funding need to get in touch with Eilidh’s Trust at hello@eilidhstrust.org.uk to give background and history, explain what they need and how the grant could help.