A number of Food banks within central south Wales become a creative hub for young people!

“Things to Make & Do” is a new initiative from Arts Active Trust for Spring 2021.

In the last year we have all become aware of just how important opportunities to be creative are to our basic wellbeing. We know that food is fundamental to our health but our mental well being needs to be nourished too, especially children and young people who have felt the impact of lockdown so hard. 

With the generous support of Paul Hamlyn Foundation through a programme organised by Engage, the National Association for Gallery Education, Arts Active Trust  commissioned artist  Lucy Dickson to create and illustrate an activity pack for young people. The creative packs called ‘Things to Make and Do’ are a way for families and children to engage creatively together or independently using the simple instructions and materials provided. Each pack contains a specially commissioned activity booklet. 

Again as we know, food banks have become an incredibly important and in demand provision during this pandemic for many people, their families and their communities..We are therefore delighted that many of these hubs in south Wales have agreed to facilitate the distribution of these FREE activity packs. So over the next couple of weeks Arts Active Trust will distribute to 11 food banks in the Pontypool  & Bridgend area (115 packs) with a further number of packs going to the Cardiff hubs later in the year. 

“We owe it to all our children to ensure that they experience an arts-rich education – it will contribute to all aspects of their development, whilst equipping them to be more resilient throughout their lives”. Dame Benita Refson President & Founder, Place2Be

This initiative supports the Arts Active Trust’s initial response to the pandemic in May 2020, where  we decided to create a combination of digital arts activities and packs, that were then distributed to young people on FREE School Meals through schools. A record 1700 FREE packs were given out as part of this initiative ahead of the summer  in our desire  to extend and adapt our offer. 

Through our recent experience, we recognise the disparity in digital provision for young people and families and access to materials. Our ‘Things to Make and Do’ activity pack aims to help plug this gap adapting our current online resources into physical packs and resources for families using local Food Banks to become a creative hub for young people and families. 

“Creative activity has been observed to stimulate an understanding of the process of making, giving rise to a greater sense of responsibility and self-reflection, increased confidence and self-esteem and better mental health”.  Creative Health: The Arts for Health and Wellbeing, report by the All Party Parliamentary Group on Arts, Health and Wellbeing.

For further information on this initiative, or the work of Arts Active Trust, please contact Patricia O’Sullivan, Marketing & Communications Coordinator e;patricia@artsactive.org.uk |07841421075

Please follow us on Twitter: @ArtsActive; Facebook: @artsactive Instagram: artsactivecardiff 

Editors Notes: 

The Arts Active Trust is a registered charity that supports education, community and audience engagement projects from St David’s Hall and the New Theatre. The Trust believes passionately in the power of the high quality arts projects to engage, inspire and transform people’s lives no matter what their economic, cultural and social context may be.

The Arts Active programme takes its inspiration from the diverse programme of the two venues and capitalises on the expertise and resources they have, using them as a powerful catalyst for creative endeavours. Arts Active delivered the A2:connect programme to the Central South region as part of the Regional Arts and Education network project, a2@artsactive.org.uk