Jamaica, October 2017.

Jamaica, October 2017.

Here at the PRS for Music Members Benevolent Fund, the welfare of PRS members, ex-members and their families is what we are all about, whether they reside in the UK or overseas. We currently support around 170 writer members on a regular monthly basis, and many more with one-off, emergency grants – ranging from opticians bills to counselling, from healthcare to debt help, and lots in between.

We regularly speak to our beneficiaries, and love to hear from members who would like to find out about the help we can sometimes offer.  While in Jamaica recently our General Secretary John Logan spent time meeting with our beneficiaries and other local PRS members in Kingston kindly arranged through the Jamaican Association of Composers Authors and Publishers (JACAP).

The importance of Jamaican music cannot be overestimated – the impact that Jamaican artists have had on British culture is huge, with their influence and on-going talent still being highly valued by music fans here in the UK and around the world. Sadly, there are many veteran Jamaican artists and songwriters who don’t benefit financially from the longevity their songs have enjoyed – be it through lack of industry knowledge at the time (back in the ’50s and ’60s), lack of access to essential legal representation, subsequent bad deals from labels and producers, and a wealth of other circumstances – much of which forms an ongoing study currently being undertaken by the University of Westminster (in collaboration with Black Music Research Unit), under the title of Bass culture: The Impact of Jamaican Music on British Culture.

The Benevolent Fund is in a unique position to assist PRS members and their families who are in genuine need, providing support to PRS members in Jamaica largely for medication needs, weekly groceries and other vital care. Our aim, as always, is to alleviate as best we can some of the difficulties being faced – whether they’re financial, physical or emotional. Whilst in Jamaica it was clear to John that the members who he met or communicated with had many concerns; from incredibly difficult circumstances through to more basic daily needs. Our aim is to improve the quality of life for PRS members in the most appropriate way we can especially those who are infirm or sick.

Speaking about his findings, John Logan said:

“There is no doubt that our work in Jamaica through JACAP is necessary and appreciated. And it’s increasing. Our partnership with JACAP is one we value highly, with the local collection society providing resources invaluable to our aims.”

All beneficiaries expressed their gratitude for the help received; the financial support means so much and makes a real difference to many lives. JACAP is an integral part of our work on the island. JACAP’s General Manager Lydia Rose and Receptionist Jean Legister deserve thanks for their helpful cooperation and support. Without JACAP’s kind involvement, getting aid to local members in genuine need would be far more difficult.

On a more personal note, as a teenager growing up in Shepherds Bush in the 1960s, Jamaican reggae was of huge importance to John throughout his youth. Jamaican music and culture and its impact on the UK and beyond is unique, and we are not alone in striving to see those behind its early creation and development receive the respect and rewards they deserve.

Our General Secretary provided his top 15 tracks for you listen to – featuring some of the best music to come out of Jamaica. Take a listen via the YouTube playlist below, and be sure to watch our latest video about the good work we do whilst you’re there.

  • No Woman No Cry – Bob Marley
  • Young Gifted & Black – Bob and Marcia
  • You Can Get It If You Really Want – Jimmy Cliff
  • Madness – Prince Buster
  • Double Barrel – Dave & Ansell Collins
  • Israelites – Desmond Dekker
  • Elizabethan Reggae – Boris Gardiner
  • Red Red Wine – UB40
  • Stir It Up – Bob Marley
  • Uptown Top Rankin – Anthea & Donna
  • Wonderful World Beautiful People – Jimmy Cliff
  • Now That We’ve Found Love – Third World
  • My Boy Lollipop – Millie
  • 54-46 Was My Number – Toots and The Maytals
  • Liquidator – Harry J Allstars

If you’re a PRS for Music member and you, or any others you know, are experiencing difficulties of any kind, do get in touch. You can call us on 020 3741 4067 or email us: fund@prsformusic.com.

We’re here to help.

Home Visits

 

We know every situation is different, and we find face-to-face meetings are an effective way to understand individual needs and offer the most relevant advice. We can arrange for our advisers to make home visits to discuss your circumstances, and advise on your benefit entitlements and ways in which the Fund can help.

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Debt Management Advice

 

We can also refer you to specialist money advisers for help with managing debts and reducing monthly expenditure.

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Short-term Loans

 

We can give short-term loans to members who have an unexpected financial crisis. We assess your circumstances to agree an amount and a timescale for paying it back.

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Regular Financial Assistance

 

We can arrange for regular small grants (up to £20 a week) to help members who are receiving benefits but still aren’t able to maintain basic standards of living. We can also help pay for things like telephone and TV rental and licence, gas and heating bills.

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One-off Grants

 

We are able to provide one-off grants in the case of unexpected crisis, and well as to elderly or disabled members who are finding it difficult to meet their living costs despite receiving all the benefits they are entitled to. It might be for anything from essential property repairs to replacing a broken fridge.

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Specialist Health Assessments

 

Together with our partners the British Association for Performing Arts Medicine (BAPAM), we provide a free and confidential medical service specially tailored to performers experiencing work-connected health problems.

BAPAM have in-depth understanding of the kind of physical and psychological problems that performing artists may experience and have been providing specialist diagnostic assessments to people in the music industry for the last 25 years.

BAPAM doesn’t deal with emergencies and isn’t a general medical service, but every appointment involves a thorough evaluation, practical advice and tips, and a referral for further treatment if it’s required.

A free diagnostic appointment with BAPAM is the gateway to understanding the problem, and a genuine chance to getting on the road to recovery.

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Sheltered Accommodation

 

In some circumstances we are able to help members find sheltered accommodation. This is arranged in association with Cyril Wood Court in Bere Regis, Dorset.

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Career Coaching

 

Do you need a change of career? Perhaps a change from songwriting or composing, or work that runs alongside it? We have two career coaches who work in different ways. If you would like a referral, please get in touch with us.

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Make a Donation

 

You can make one-off donation or set up a regular monthly gift simply and securely at justgiving.com/prsformusic or send a cheque payable to “PRS for Music Members Benevolent Fund” at 2 Pancras Square, London N1C 4AG.

Don’t forget if you’re a UK tax payer, we can receive an extra 28p from the Inland Revenue for every £1 you donate. Please tick the Gift Aid box when making an online donation on JustGiving or download the Gift Aid Form and send it to us with your cheque.

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Donate Copyright and Royalties

 
It is because of members who bequeath us their PRS payments, royalties and copyrights, that we can be there to support members who need our help. If these are made a Gift of Will, they will be exempt from Inheritance Tax. We recommend that you ask a solicitor for advice and we have produced will drafting notes to help you. Alternatively you can donate a percentage of your PRS royalties at each PRS distribution. If you’d like to do this please download the PRS royalties form and your donations will start from the next PRS distribution.

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Leave a Legacy

 

You can either leave a residuary legacy or a pecuniary legacy.

A residuary legacy is what is left of your estate after tax, expenses and other legacies have been paid. You can leave a percentage of your residuary legacy to the PRS for Music Members Benevolent Fund. A pecuniary legacy is a fixed sum of money that may decrease in value over time.

You can make a new Will or change your existing Will at any point, and we recommend that you ask a solicitor for advice. We have produced will drafting notes to help you.

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