A collaborative art project focused on inspiring older people 50+ as volunteers, to then support older more vulnerable people as participants in creative sessions based at the Age UK Canterbury and Age UK Herne Bay and Whitstable.
1 - Recruit and train a team of creative volunteers. Espression Arts CIC and Kent Arts and Wellbeing, in partnership recruited 40+ volunteers and delivered specific “Creative Volunteer” training in Summer 2018. The training was to empower the group to understand their role, the project mission, the creative skills needed to help delivery and find out the needs of our volunteers. The training team gave the volunteers the knowledge to prepare them to support older people, some of which live with dementia to engage in the creative tasks over 24 weeks.
2 – Set up a creative Volunteer Network Meeting in order for the volunteers to share information, meet regularly to learn about the project opportunities, support eachother, build friendships and take on responsibility for the project. We also set up a successful facebook page in order for the group to communicate with each other and the project team, share project success and gain project information.
3 – Creative Session Delivery, 70 workshops took place in 9 locations at both Age UK Canterbury and Age Uk Herne Bay and Whitstable. We also delivered from the Dementia Cafe in Thanington Resource Centre, All Saints Church Hall in Northgate. Volunteers supported Creative Artist Catherine Arnell from Espression Arts to engage older people into many workshops designed to build trust, skills and creative confidence to result in a series of collaborative, decorative ceramic art murals.
4 – Public Exhibition, Volunteers, participants and artists worked together to exhibit amazing mounted murals for the public to see and challenge views of older peoples creativity. 2 week showcase exhibition at Garage Coffee in Canterbury March 2019. Our Work of Art – With These Hands Book of journalistic photos and story of our project journey.