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£120,000 awarded to support youth arts projects across Northern Ireland

Thursday 22nd February 2018 at 10am 0 Comments Youth Arts

Pictured are: Christopher White (MYAC), Lorraine Calderwood (Arts Council), Orlaith Moley (PHA) with project participant Nathan Fitzpatrick and artist Conor McGinley. Image: Pictured are: Christopher White (MYAC), Lorraine Calderwood (Arts Council), Orlaith Moley (PHA) with project participant Nathan Fitzpatrick and artist Conor McGinley.

Twelve youth projects in communities across Northern Ireland are set to benefit from £120,000 of funding to develop bespoke arts projects that promote positive health and wellbeing.

The grants have been awarded in the second phase of the ARTiculate programme, a £600,000 project launched last year and supported by the Arts Council National Lottery Funds and the Public Health Agency (PHA). Projects in Belfast, Newry, Enniskillen, Cookstown, Limavady, Dungannon and Derry/Londonderry are among those to have received funding.

Working in partnership with community organisations and artists, the funding scheme will deliver tailor-made arts projects to groups of young people across Northern Ireland. Using a range of artforms including drama, music, visual arts and literature, the ARTiculate programme has been established to help give young people a voice to talk about the issues which most affect their lives, including mental health issues, family pressures and exam worries.

Roisin McDonough, Chief Executive of the Arts Council of Northern Ireland, commented:

“We launched the ARTiculate programme a year ago with the aim of increasing access to the arts for young people. The links between arts and wellbeing are now very well established and we are delighted with the positive impact those first 15 projects have had in communities right across Northern Ireland.
“Working with the Public Health Agency, this second phase of funding will see that important work continue,  opening  up opportunities for young people to engage in the arts and the many benefits that brings, from promoting self-expression, to developing self-confidence and self-motivation.”

Mary Black, Assistant Director of Health and Social Wellbeing Improvement with the PHA, said: 

“The Public Health Agency looks at innovative ways to improve people’s health and wellbeing. This programme with the Arts Council is a perfect example of using the arts to give a voice to young people and encourage help-seeking behaviour.

“The PHA recognises the positive impact that the arts can play in improving the mental health and wellbeing of our young people. Participants will benefit in a number of ways, such as making new friends and connections, developing new skills, gaining confidence in their abilities, and learning more about the help and support that is available on mental health.”

The 12 projects to have received funding are:  

Youth Action Northern Ireland, Domino 3, £10,000
Limavady, Enniskillen, Greater Belfast and Cookstown
A drama based project that will target young people and explore taboos, prejudice, stigma and difficult issues relating to mental health. The project will inspire those involved to share with their peers and talk more openly about the issues affecting them.

Arts Care, The Red Flag Project, £10,000
Northern, Southern Eastern and Western Trust areas
With this funding, a toolkit will be developed, based on the input from the young people engaged in the first phase of this project. This toolkit will be developed and shared with secondary schools in areas of high deprivation.

ArtsEkta, Shout Louder Film Project, £10,000
Dungannon and Belfast
This project will work with 30 disadvantaged young people to create three short films covering issues including anxiety, depression, bullying on social media, peer pressure and suicide. The films will address the stigma, prejudice and misconceptions surrounding these important issues.

Fresh Minds Education, Fresh Young Artists, £9,996
South Antrim and Mid-Ulster
Fresh Young Artists will use creativity to help young people unlock their voice and talk about mental health issues. The project will use creative approaches to help young people discuss and cope with a range of stressful situations including bereavement, suicide, self-harm, exams and divorce.

Suicide Awareness and Support Group, £9,855
North and West Belfast
The young people involved in this project will explore challenges around mental health issues and communicate outcomes positively to their peers. It will support teens to take control of how they use social media and promote positive social change.

An Gaelaras , All Access Trad, £9,892
This project will engage young people with learning disabilities in acquiring the skills to perform Irish Traditional and Ulster Scots music. 20 young people will take part in a total of 24 sessions, leading up to a final performance.

Conservation Volunteers, Keeping Our HerARTage Alive, £10,000
Keeping Our Heritage Alive will aim to engage young people at risk from suicide and self-harm. Using environmental art workshops, design and construction, this project will build confidence, personal skills and have a positive effect on physical and mental health and wellbeing.

NIACRO, Bassline Project, £9,822
Belfast and Southern Trust
NIACRO’s Baseline Project will deliver four courses for hard to reach young people in high-quality creative audio, DJ and podcasting opportunities. 

Lighthouse, Mind Check, £9,480
Lighthouse is an organisation committed to the prevention of suicide and self-harm. The project will deliver a programme bringing 12 socially diverse young people together across Northern Ireland to develop an interactive game, working with artists and community partners. The project will address stigma, challenge prejudice and discrimination associated with mental health.

Dove House, Feel Good @ The One Stop Shop, £10,000
This project will see a series of music sessions delivered at the One Stop Shop in Derry.There will also be street art and dance sessions delivered out in the community as part of a four week programme.

Extern Supporting Communities, Pieces Project, £10,000
The Pieces Project will offer young people access to a range of arts activities, including digital photography, drama, music and open mic sessions. The activities are designed to be fun and interactive, with a focus on improving and maintaining emotional health and wellbeing.

Magnet Young Adult Centre, Identity with Arts, £10,000
The first phase of this project will focus on photography and graffiti workshops, identifying issues affecting their lives. The second phase will see the group take the work they have created out into the local community, developing positive messaging and information on support available to share with their peers.                                                        


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