Start creating opportunities in the North East

03 September 2018

Start creating opportunities in the North East

Children & the Arts and Culture Bridge North East are delighted that Théâtre Sans Frontières in partnership with Queen's Hall Arts Centre and Woodhorn Charitable Trust have joined Children & the Arts’ UK wide Start programme. 

Children & the Arts is the leading national children’s charity dedicated to ensuring arts access for all children and young people across the UK, regardless of circumstance. Since its launch in 2006, Children & the Arts has worked with over half a million children across the UK to inspire them through arts engagement.

Start is the charity’s flagship programme. It is a three-year project of arts activity between arts organisations and schools, particularly ones in economically challenged areas where children may be at risk of missing out on creative and cultural experiences.  Working with children aged between 4-16 years, Start raises the aspirations of young people, building confidence and helping with learning and development in school.

By working with Culture Bridge North East (CBNE) and in collaboration with Northumberland Cultural Educational Partnership (NCEP), CBNE was able to match fund Children & the Arts investment of £50,000 to bring two new Start projects to Northumberland.

During the first year, children make at least two introductory visits to the arts organisation to see a professional performance, concert or exhibition. Their visits will be enhanced by workshops with the arts organisation’s learning team to develop a creative response and encourage critical analysis. Children also have the opportunity to celebrate their achievements at the end of each year

Start provides teachers with training for them to deliver the programme, helping pupils realise their full potential, make links to the curriculum and to ensure a lasting legacy for the project.

Rosie Millard, Chief Executive of Children & the Arts: “Across the UK, Start has been responsible for giving children their first experiences in a theatre, gallery or concert hall. We aim to totally engage children and young people, allowing their creativity to flourish so that they are far more than audience members and their engagement with the arts organisations is far more than one-off. Start helps share the remarkable creativity and culture of the UK with people who might never have thought of accessing it. We are delighted to have these new partners, who can help us bring arts engagement to more young people, and I look forward to working with them enormously.”

Mel Carter, Culture Bridge North East Area Manager for Northumberland: “We’re extremely proud to support the Start programme. It provides fantastic opportunities for children and young people to get involved with arts and culture and gives them the chance to take part in different challenges, which in turn develops their skills and confidence. Working with Children & the Arts on the Start programme is the Northumberland Cultural Education Partnership’s first large scale project. It marks the beginning of a longer term action plan, targeting activity where it will make a real difference to young people’s lives.”

Notes for Editors

Children & the Arts is a national children’s charity tackling inequality through sustained arts experiences. The charity believes that every child has the right to a rich and inspiring creative education and that no pupil’s experiences should be limited by the circumstances of their birth.

Founded by HRH The Prince of Wales, Children & the Arts works with arts venues across the UK to reach children in communities and in hospices for whom the chances to enjoy creative and cultural experiences are limited.

CBNE is one of 10 bridge organisations across England, funded by Arts Council England, to help ensure every child and young person has the opportunity to access high quality arts and cultural education. 

Northumberland Cultural Education Partnership brings the education and arts sectors together to enable Northumberland’s children and young people to become confident, active citizens through engagement in arts activity.