Octoblog

The Octopus Ukulele blog

Ukuleles for Ukraine – improving lives through the power of music

Ukuleles for Ukraine

ukulelesforukraine-blog-1

Music making has a power like no other form of communication to inspire and unite people. As well as the joy brought by one’s instinctive emotional reaction to a piece of music, having the opportunity to learn, play and perform has a tremendous effect on both an individual’s self-confidence and his or her ability to interact with others. This makes music an invaluable tool for combatting poverty, suffering and injustice.

Help for the disadvantaged

There are examples all over the world of music being used to help the disadvantaged, from the long established El Sistema in Venezuela which continues to raise children from poor families to the heights of professional musical excellence, to the more recent Brass for Africa project that builds communities by providing instruments and tuition for the poor in Uganda.

When we heard about Ukuleles for Ukraine, we jumped at the chance to help out. The uke is the perfect instrument for outreach projects as it’s easy to learn and easy to transport, and as the founders of Ukuleles for Ukraine say, it’s the world’s happiest instrument!

ukes-for-ukraine-chairForgotten children

It’s difficult to discern the total scale of Ukraine’s orphan problem as the hardship its people have faced since gaining independence from the Soviet Union in 1991 have meant that the government has found it near impossible to keep accurate records. As a result, thousands of young people across the country are unregistered, and have become known as the ‘forgotten children’.

Abandoned at birth

Ukraine continues to be blighted by civil unrest, extreme poverty and widespread drug problems which in turn leads to the country having the highest population of HIV sufferers in Europe. As well as children orphaned by warfare and illness, many children are abandoned at birth by parents who cannot support them or believe that the state will do a better job, and yet more are taken into custody by authorities who deem parents unfit to care for them. A high proportion of these forgotten children have disabilities and health problems which the orphanages don’t know how or can’t afford to treat.

Unhappy childhood

Orphanages in the country receive very little funding and rely heavily on volunteers. Very few are able to provide a proper diet or education to the children in their care, and many are rife with abuse and neglect. Some even recruit directly to the slave labour or sex industries. To make matters worse, those that do survive this unhappy childhood are stigmatised and branded as undesirable, often forbidden to marry or live alone and deprived of basic human rights.

ukes_for_ukraine-classroomUkuleles for Ukraine

There are many UN initiatives already in action providing basic food, medicine and blankets to those most in need throughout Ukraine, but the bulk of the work is being done by charities and volunteers.

Ukuleles for Ukraine aims to make a small difference to the lives of the forgotten children by providing them with instruments and music lessons as well as doing what they can to help local volunteers buy basic supplies of clothes, toiletries and educational resources. Through making music they also hope to contribute much needed fun and laughter.

They made their first trip to Ukraine in April 2015 and the video below gives a moving account of their endeavours.

 

What can I do?
Octopus Ukulele proudly supports the work that Quinn, Mark and their friends are doing and share their faith in the ukulele’s ability to improve lives. If you’d like to help, there are three ways you can. The easiest is to donate some money via their GoFundMe page, but if you feel you can do more, take a look at their website for details on volunteering, fundraising and adopting orphans.

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Website privacy policy

Key details

This website privacy policy describes how Frederick Hyde Ltd (producers of Octopus ukuleles and accessories) protects and makes use of the information you give the company when you use this website.

If you are asked to provide information when using this website, it will only be used in the ways described in this privacy policy.

This policy is updated from time to time. The latest version is published on this page.

This website privacy policy was updated on July 1st 2016

If you have any questions about this policy, please contact us.

Introduction

We gather and use certain information about individuals in order to provide products and services and to enable certain functions on this website.

We also collect information to better understand how visitors use this website and to present timely, relevant information to them.

What data we gather

We may collect the following information:

How we use this data

Collecting this data helps us understand what you are looking from the company, enabling us to deliver improved products and services.

Specifically, we may use data:

Cookies and how we use them

What is a cookie?

A cookie is a small file placed on your computer's hard drive. It enables our website to identify your computer as you view different pages on our website.

Cookies allow websites and applications to store your preferences in order to present content, options or functions that are specific to you. They also enable us to see information like how many people use the website and what pages they tend to visit.

How we use cookies

Cookies do not provide us with access to your computer or any information about you, other than that which you choose to share with us.

Controlling cookies

You can use your web browser’s cookie settings to determine how our website uses cookies. If you do not want our website to store cookies on your computer or device, you should set your web browser to refuse cookies.

However, please note that doing this may affect how our website functions. Some pages and services may become unavailable to you.

Unless you have changed your browser to refuse cookies, our website will issue cookies when you visit it.

To learn more about cookies and how they are used, visit All About Cookies.

Controlling information about you

When you fill in a form or provide your details on our website, you will see one or more tick boxes allowing you to:

If you have agreed that we can use your information for marketing purposes, you can change your mind easily, via one of these methods:

We will never lease, distribute or sell your personal information to third parties unless we have your permission or the law requires us to.

Any personal information we hold about you is stored and processed under our data protection policy, in line with the Data Protection Act 1998.

Links from our site

Our website may contain links to other websites.

Please note that we have no control of websites outside the octopusukulele.co.uk and octopusukulele.com domains. If you provide information to a website to which we link, we are not responsible for its protection and privacy. Always be wary when submitting data to websites. Read the site’s data protection and privacy policies fully.

For clarification on any of our policies please contact us

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Our website uses cookies. If you continue to browse we will assume your permission to use cookies. For more information read our privacy policy

Website privacy policy

Key details

This website privacy policy describes how Frederick Hyde Ltd (producers of Octopus ukuleles and accessories) protects and makes use of the information you give the company when you use this website.

If you are asked to provide information when using this website, it will only be used in the ways described in this privacy policy.

This policy is updated from time to time. The latest version is published on this page.

This website privacy policy was updated on July 1st 2016

If you have any questions about this policy, please contact us.

Introduction

We gather and use certain information about individuals in order to provide products and services and to enable certain functions on this website.

We also collect information to better understand how visitors use this website and to present timely, relevant information to them.

What data we gather

We may collect the following information:

How we use this data

Collecting this data helps us understand what you are looking from the company, enabling us to deliver improved products and services.

Specifically, we may use data:

Cookies and how we use them

What is a cookie?

A cookie is a small file placed on your computer's hard drive. It enables our website to identify your computer as you view different pages on our website.

Cookies allow websites and applications to store your preferences in order to present content, options or functions that are specific to you. They also enable us to see information like how many people use the website and what pages they tend to visit.

How we use cookies

Cookies do not provide us with access to your computer or any information about you, other than that which you choose to share with us.

Controlling cookies

You can use your web browser’s cookie settings to determine how our website uses cookies. If you do not want our website to store cookies on your computer or device, you should set your web browser to refuse cookies.

However, please note that doing this may affect how our website functions. Some pages and services may become unavailable to you.

Unless you have changed your browser to refuse cookies, our website will issue cookies when you visit it.

To learn more about cookies and how they are used, visit All About Cookies.

Controlling information about you

When you fill in a form or provide your details on our website, you will see one or more tick boxes allowing you to:

If you have agreed that we can use your information for marketing purposes, you can change your mind easily, via one of these methods:

We will never lease, distribute or sell your personal information to third parties unless we have your permission or the law requires us to.

Any personal information we hold about you is stored and processed under our data protection policy, in line with the Data Protection Act 1998.

Links from our site

Our website may contain links to other websites.

Please note that we have no control of websites outside the octopusukulele.co.uk and octopusukulele.com domains. If you provide information to a website to which we link, we are not responsible for its protection and privacy. Always be wary when submitting data to websites. Read the site’s data protection and privacy policies fully.

For clarification on any of our policies please contact us

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