Arts and Crafts delivery and research in South West venues
Superact has now started to deliver its pilot workshop sessions for the Arts Crafts Dignity in Care project in care venues across the South West.
We are focussing on three groups of beneficiaries:
- Older people in care homes
- Those with Learning Disabilities in day centres
- Young people who have disengaged from society, education and the workplace
The aim of ACDC is to explore how to support and equip artists who deliver creative engagement activities with the above groups. We are working on better empathy and inclusion from the artists workshops to help reduce the feelings of social isolation for some beneficiaries in busy care environments.
We are addressing two main questions with this project:
Do artists really understand what dependency and vulnerability mean for the people they work with and how this knowledge can be integrated into the performance they deliver – Will they understand more and have better empathy if immersed into the life of a beneficiary.
Does artistic engagement contribute to the reduction of social exclusion? Is art a powerful tool with which to make contact? Is art a way to make a connection with the person instead of seeing them with a physical, visual or social impairment – a way to see the persons full life of experiences and to see their appreciation of life and art through different eyes.
Our wonderful storyteller – Stu Packer worked in partnership with Phil Tucker from The Laurels day centre in Chard and the Sixacres day centre in Taunton, both of which are day centres for adults with learning disabilities. Although Phil delivers some wonderful art sessions at The Laurels the medium of story- telling was new to him!
The chaps decided to only plan one element of the sessions – a story line – with the aim of making the interactive workshops as “in the moment” as possible and allow the beneficiaries to take the lead and start to tell the story together and build on the story throughout the afternoon.
The participants had a wonderful experience, there was much laughter and incredible memory retention, as the story was repeated time and time again by the participants to allow for the next step for the lead characters. Fancy dress was involved, singing and much humour!
On March 13th we will be at The Oaktree Court nursing home in Wellington, Somerset with Paul Hutchinson (Folk musician) and Sarah Mooney (story teller) followed by a Grafitti session in Exeter with a group of young people.
The end of March will bring a huge reflection meeting in Lille, France for all the artists who have taken part to date in the Immersion sessions and the pilot workshops. This has not been easy for the artists involved – many of whom have considerable experience with the beneficiary groups but have been prepared to open their heads and hearts to a different way of working.
Please remember to save the date for our project seminar on June 16th 2015 at The Lighthouse, Poole.