On Sunday 5th May the Silver Tassie Hotel will host an unmissable evening’s big bank holiday entertainment when the one of the biggest swing bands in the North West, the Bleu Note Big Band featuring Andrew Monk, take to the stage.
The 17 piece big band from Derry attract a huge crowd wherever they play and they are sure to have the place jump jiving and swinging with their big band arrangements of the legendary Glen Miller, Frank Sinatra, Michael Bublé blended with Motown classics and modern day hits.
It’s all to raise some funds for two very worthwhile local charities – Donegal Mental Health Associations and Rebuild For Bosnia as organiser Bill Vaughan from Mental Health Ireland explains.
“There are ten mental health associations in Co Donegal, made up of volunteers who do a variety of activities within their communities to promote positive mental health as well as supporting anyone who may be having problems relating to their mental health. These activities include supporting day centres, providing housing, befriending, providing low cost training and running social clubs. The work of these volunteers is vital in these times when services are stretched and are finding it difficult to meet the needs of people with mental health difficulties who live in the community, rather than a residential setting.
“There is also a huge Donegal connection to the Rebuild For Bosnia project which is a charity that helps the people of Bosnia to rebuild their homes and lives. Several members of our local community make an annual trip to the Bosnian region to help families who have been occupying huts and shacks since their homes were permanently destroyed and their towns and villages cleansed of their own ethnicity.
“People returning from these annual pilgrimages tell the tale of the hardship that still continues out of the glare of the media.”
The Big Band evening is also one of a series of national events that are participating in a countrywide campaign being organised by See Change. The Green Ribbon initiative is the symbol for this national programme aimed at reducing stigma and challenging discrimination associated with mental health.
“As someone who has had an on-going battle with depression for the past number of years I felt that it was time to organise an event in the Letterkenny and wider Donegal community which people could come and enjoy but leave with a better appreciation of what mental health issues exist and what they can do to help someone they believe may be quietly suffering.
“The first and most important step is to start the conversation about mental health. So much has been done since I was first diagnosed to reduce stigma and challenge discrimination but challenges still remain. The Green Ribbon campaign is aimed at creating a recognisable symbol which is hoped in turn will kick start this national drive to raise more awareness about mental health.
“These are two local organisations that do so much for both our local community and for the good of people that have experienced extreme trauma in their lives. As you can appreciate money is exceptionally tight and this fantastic night of entertainment is our way of saying thanks to all the volunteers for all that they have done. So put Sunday 5th May in your diary and come along for what will be an incredible night of top class music and dancing.”
Doors open at 8pm and light refreshments will be served on the night. Tickets, priced €20 are now on sale from The Silver Tassie Hotel, (074) 9125619, Cara House, (074) 9123986 or by contacting Bill Vaughan on (086) 7723287.