About Us

About Good Vibrations

Good Vibrations is a registered charity (number 1126493) that helps prisoners, patients in secure hospitals, ex-prisoners and others in the community to develop crucial life and work skills through participating in intensive Gamelan (Indonesian bronze percussion) courses. Since 2003 Good Vibrations has worked with more than 4500 participants in 61 different institutions. Gamelan is an extremely effective tool for achieving our aims:

  • It is very accessible
  • You don’t need to have any previous musical experience
  • You don’t need to be able to read music
  • It’s easy to learn the basics
  • It’s a very communal activity - there is no overall conductor or leader and everyone’s contribution is equally important
  • You have to listen to everyone else to fit your own part in
About Good Vibrations

A Good Vibrations project typically runs as a week-long course for a group of 15 - 20 participants. Most will not have done anything musical before. At the end of the week the group puts on an informal performance. Each performance is recorded and a CD is produced, a copy of which is given to everyone who has taken part. Participants will benefit enormously from the short but intensive experience.

Research that we have commissioned shows that our courses:

  • Help people develop crucial life/work skills and improve relationships with peers, staff and family members;
  • Increase engagement with other constructive activities eg education and Offending Behaviour Programmes;
  • Improve people's sense of well-being and calm;
  • Can dramatically reduce self-harm rates;
  • And furthermore, these benefits are sustained in the longer term

We have a reputation for being professional and effective, particularly when working with more difficult and hard-to-engage people that other interventions and projects fail to reach, for example:

  • Self-harmers
  • The very low-skilled
  • VPs (Vulnerable Prisoners)
  • Non English speakers
  • “Failed Learners”
  • “Persistent Basic” (ie persistent trouble-makers)
  • People with serious mental health problems and severe personality disorders
  • People coming off drugs

We often work alongside other professionals, such as prison education providers, drugs teams, prison safer custody teams, psychology teams, prison industries. These partners value our work particularly in terms of engaging the hard-to-reach and acting as a 'gateway' into other activities, including other arts projects, mainstream education and Offending Behaviour Programmes.

Good Vibrations Core Values

Our Core Values

Our statement of Core Values was drawn up in November 2004 and reviewed in October 2005, May 2007 and May 2008, in full consultation with the Good Vibrations project team... read more

Good Vibrations Our Team

Our Team

Every member of the Good Vibrations team is a highly experienced community musician. As well as being accomplished musicians, every member of the team is an expert group facilitator... read more

Board Members

An experienced and diverse Board of Trustees ensure that Good Vibrations is well-governed and best able to work effectively in the future... read more

Patrons

Good Vibrations is very proud to have as our Patrons two highly regarded visionaries from the worlds of criminal justice and gamelan music... read more

Places and Partners We Have Worked With

We have run Good Vibrations projects and courses at the following places... read more

Help us make a difference

We need all the support we can get! Please get in touch if you might be able to help us with a donation or in some other way.

Join Us

Watch a film all about us

Filmed in Peterborough Prison by Prison video magazine, this film tracks a typical Good Vibrations project.

Take a look

Want to host a Good Vibrations project?

Click here to discover more if you are interested in bringing Good Vibrations to your establishment.

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Listen to our music online

We are not just about developing team working and key skills. We also produce the very best in new Gamelan music.

The Music