When someone commits to long-term support for Global Care, it really is music to our ears. And this couldn’t be more true of singer-songwriter, Rob Halligan.
For 16 years, Rob has been a staunch friend of Global Care. Now, in his latest show of support, he’s releasing a new single in aid of our Coronavirus Crisis Appeal. So what brought Rob to this point?
An Anthem of Hope
‘The Other Side’ is an anthem of hope, written by Rob in lockdown. “Someone said to me, ‘See you on the other side’ and that’s where the germ of the song came from,” he explains. “With so many people finding this so difficult, it’s a message of hope and looking forward, and hanging in there. I think that’s something we all need to hear right now.
“While I was writing it, I was following Global Care’s work. When we’re all stuck in the middle of the pandemic, it’s easy to forget that there are people in incredibly vulnerable communities who are experiencing this on top of all their usual challenges. I wanted to write something which people could identify with at home, but can also be applied to Global Care’s projects.”
A Tsunami and A Fish Farm, Pre-schools and Refugees
Rob first became involved with Global Care back in 2004 when he brought local musicians together for a ‘Band Aid’-style track to raise money for victims of the Boxing Day Tsunami in South East Asia.
“When I found out that there was a small Coventry charity working with the community in Sri Lanka to help the poorest children gain an education, I started donating to Global Care,” says Rob.
A few years later, Rob began raising funds to help us create fish farms in Bangladesh, empowering families to develop sustainable incomes.
“I visited the project in Horintana and it was an amazing experience,” says Rob. “People talk about experiences being life-changing and this gave me a new perspective on life. I was touched by the fact that these people have nothing, but treat you like kings.”
Rob made a video during his time in Horintana and when he went on tour with his music, he was able to show the footage and talk about how the fish farms were transforming people’s lives.
In 2011, Rob also made a flying visit to the rural pre-schools we helped to develop in Ethiopia’s most isolated communities in the Hadiya region, where children are provided with a basic, grass-roots education, and the learning skills they need to cope in formal government schools. Having written a couple of songs about his experience in Ethiopia, he toured again, using his music to raise awareness of our work with vulnerable children in some of the poorest places in the world.
Five years later, he went to eastern Lebanon to see how we’re helping Syrian refugee children access education, in an informal ‘shack school’ in a roadside refugee settlement.
“Music has the power to tell stories in a way that connects with people,” says Rob. “I think when I tell these stories it closes the gap, and brings those situations into our lives and lets us know we can make a difference. Having visited some of Global Care’s projects and seen the incredible work they do, it’s important that even now, in the middle of a pandemic, we step up to help the vulnerable communities they support.”
‘The Other Side’ will be released on 22nd June and will be available from all major download sites and www.robhalligan.co.uk All proceeds will go to our Children At Risk fund, the emergency fund we are using to respond to the Coronavirus Crisis,
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