● Fotonow CIC
● Plymouth City Council
● Plymouth Arts Cinema
Briefly describe your project
The Culture Connectors Collective will welcome young people engaged with youth services in Plymouth to try out creative and cultural venues and activities in the city. Connectors will work with young people referred through Youth Justice Services to build connections with Fotonow CIC and Plymouth Arts Cinema. Digital media outputs will share young people’s thoughts and opinions about these spaces and activities so others can learn from this.
Describe what you hope your Collective will achieve
The Collective would like to support young people and those they work with to build new connections and networks, to share information and skills to enable confidence to engage with new activities. We will encourage young people from Plymouth City Council Youth Justice Services to try out Fotonow’s creative media workshops and other planned Plymouth Arts Cinema screen activities via a Connector, who will mediate and support young people to settle into a new space, activity or group. We are carefully considering the activities and approaches we take with the group, as we capture the voices of young people and seek out a range of opportunities to get involved in.
The ‘Connectors’ will play a key role in this project: building relationships with Fotonow and PAC staff and gaining knowledge before introducing the young person(s). This process will also support skills and knowledge exchange between professionals from different sectors and might identify some barriers to participation in cultural opportunities. As a collective we understand that professionals across the sectors often struggle with resources to make the time to build new connections and reach out to new groups and opportunities, which can result in gaps in mutual knowledge and confidence.
We would like to test this approach and we will work with young people to create a ‘toolkit’ with tips and suggestions to help venues and other professionals to consider what is helpful for younger and audiences new to viewing. The toolkit will share what young people find out about visiting venues and joining a new group. Looking ahead to British Art Show 9 (BAS9) we would like to use learning from this collaboration to inform how the Collective can continue to work together, work with young people and other youth partners and cultural venues in Plymouth to support young people to enjoy this major city-wide cultural event. We hope that a resource created by young people with our support will help make new connections and bridge some gaps in knowledge and information.
Describe how your Collective formed
This collaboration started during a two-year action research study in 2020 and 2021 initially over zoom, during which we had discussions about how to best support young people and realised we were aligned on some key issues. We all recognise that social connections are important to young people as are safe supportive spaces to try new things. We think sharing learning across sectors is key to creating opportunities for young people and we hope a resource made by young people can bridge some gaps in knowledge and information.
The Culture Connectors Collective deciced to work together to bring the ideas from these conversations into action, recognising that pooling our resources, time and knowledge will help us support young and explore the issues and share the learning from this pilot much more effectively. Deciding to work together as a collective has helped us shape our plans and focus on the practical details of how we propose to work together. Fotonow CIC is a media social enterprise media committed to amplifying underrepresented voices and stories through digital media. Plymouth Arts Cinema are passionate about films and aims to create a space where everyone can develop a passion for film. Youth Justice Services brings skills and expertise in relationship and trust-based work with young people experiencing challenging times in their lives, and experience of introducing young people to arts spaces in Plymouth.
Which collaboration “shape” do you expect will best describe your project?
MURMURATION – Like a flock of birds flying together, all the organisations of the collective work closely together on all aspects of the project.
In which areas would you expect most of your grant to be spent on?
Research / Pilot