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Another week and another great example of how culture is creating strong community links through the work of Find Your Talent Leeds.

Year 2 children from Asquith Primary School in Morley are exploring the past through a heritage project led by Creative Facilitator, Irene Lofthouse.

Children and their teachers are bringing to life the history of the markets town’s key buildings and landmarks.  The work will form the basis of a child and family friendly Morley heritage trail connecting the experiences of different generations.

This project reflects  a key strand to Find Your Talent Leeds ethos; linking together different partners to engage all children and families in their cultural heritage and connect communities.

Irene has worked with Find Your Talent , Artemis (Education Leeds), Leeds Libraries; Leeds Museums and Galleries; Morley Archives and Morley Local History Group to create an inspirational learning experience for children. It draws on some of the exciting resources Leeds has to offer to make the history of Morley relevant to children who live there now.

The Discovery Centre provided a great setting for FYT’s first Early Arts professional development event. The programme explored early years provision in Leeds and profiled some great projects taking place across the city including Creative Partnerships Enquiry Programme at Brudenell Primary School.

Delegates were also treated to a tour of the Discovery Centre and took part in a spot of speed networking. For details about the next FYT Early Arts event please contact hannah.farley@leeds.gov.uk

In the run up to GRT History Month, Leeds Find Your Talent are supporting a series of photographic sessions at Studio 12 in Leeds Central Library for young people aged 8-14 from the GRT community. Working alongside Studio12’s Media Arts Facilitator participants will develop their technical and composition skills to explore issues around identity and create unique portraits of Travellers in the present-day.  The images will be profiled in an exhibition as part of the GRT History month celebrations at Leeds Central Library during June.

Studio12 is a well established media arts resource delivered by Leeds Libraries and, as well as providing a creative hub, it offers a great opportunity to connect young people from Leeds GRT community with the wide range of services provided by Leeds Libraries including a Traveller support group for literacy skills development.

GRT History Month is a national initiative that challenges perceptions, raises awareness and provides a partnership with schools, heritage organisations, central government and local authorities. Leeds and Yorkshire has a history rich with the presence of Traveller and Gypsies, as one of the region’s oldest ethnic minorities the first recorded mention of Gypsies in Leeds was in 1572. In the UK they are recognised ethnic minority communities; in Leeds there are approximately 4,000 people from the Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities.

The photographs will be part of The Leeds Traveller History Photographic Exhibition which runs from May 5th until 27th May 2010. The exhibition promises to be a real highlight for GRT History month and will celebrate the achievements of the local GRT communities who have a valuable role to play in the cultural heritage of Leeds.   

 

S-T-R-E-T-C-H were awarded a grant from Find Your Talent (Leeds) to work with a group of young people from care homes in Leeds and create museum collections from their personal belongings. The project was a great opportunity for young people to think about museum collections in a new way and included workshops in the care homes as well as visits to Leeds City Museum and the Discovery Centre.

Through these workshops participants gained confidence and were more able to communicate their ideas and creativity through the project that resulted in a final display piece Bad Girls Museum. They also gained Arts Award qualifications that are nationally recognised.

S-T-R-E-T-C-H is an arts charity established six years ago by Carlotta Goulden that works alongside disadvantaged groups, museums and gallery spaces. The York based charity founder was the workshop leader on the My Museum project, she commented that working with looked after children had been ‘really successful’ and is ‘something we feel really strongly about and have been really encouraged by going into their homes and engaging with them in this way’.

Last month we blogged about the Text Message Museum project being led by Lisa Roberts from Blink. Here’s a sneak preview of some of the poems written by Yr7 students from Bruntcliffe School in Morley who visited Kirkstall Abbey.

The Warming Room
Three other monks
Crowd round the fire
They were getting warm
My fifteen minutes were up
Reece Jameson

Prison
I am preparing the cell
For a bad monk
Who must have been greedy
Or stolen something precious
Morgan Halliday

I only eat once a day
And I sometimes dream of eating what I want
I am being called by the boss
To come and help with the choir
Tia

Leeds Museums and Galleries are working with young people across the city to create text message signage for collections and exhibitions.  Young people have been working alongside poets from The Poetry Business  looking at artefacts and responding to them in text message poetry.

Mobile technology company, Blink, are leading the project which has so far included poetry workshops at Abbey House Museum, Kirkstall Abbey and Leeds City Art Gallery. Participants have included members of  Sessions At The Gallery and pupils from Bruntcliffe High School in Morley.

The project will be launched in February when the text poems can be requested by visitors and sent directly to mobile phone. Visitors to the venues can contribute their own poems, by text, to add to the growing archive.

By supporting user generated content the project aims to create a space for young people and families to interpret exhibitions in a new and engaging way. 

More venues will be added to the text message museum map during 2010 and a website will showcase the poems online.

For more information contact lisa@blinkmedia.org

thackray-medical-museum (copyright rich tea)

FYT was at the Thackray Medical Museum on Friday to attend the first event in the national roll out of Campaign! Make An Impact. The project uses museum and library collections to inspire young people about historical campaigns including the abolition of the slave trade, public health and suffragettes. Using their new skills participants plan and run campaigns about issues which affect them today.

Thackray Medical Museum was part of the original three year pilot project and developed a campaign with young people from Primrose High School using objects from the museum’s public health collection. Harewood House were also a key partner in the pilot phase working with young people from North Yorkshire.

A regional network of museums, libraries and community partners is currently being developed to ensure that the Campaign! Make An Impact model is made accessible to all schools and community groups in Yorkshire.

A new website is due to be launched in the next few weeks but, in the meantime, more information about the project can be found by clicking on the link below:
Campaign! Make An Impact.

What was FYT?

Find Your Talent was a national programme to explore new ways of opening up cultural and creative opportunities to young people. Leeds was one of the ten FYT Pathfinders in England.

The programme was led by Leeds City Council and Education Leeds, working closely together and with the city's cultural and community sectors to find ways for more young people to participate in the cultural life of the city.

FYT was funded to operate between 2008-2011 but its legacy in Leeds continues through activities under the Breeze banner, as well as other initiatives.