EU EUROPEAN SOCIAL FUND COMMUNITY GRANT
DEVELOPMENT OF LEARNING and SKILLS FOR HOMELESS PEOPLE
Overcoming barriers to learning is critical and Catching Lives has set out to develop creative opportunities for clients to improve health and wellbeing, reduce isolation,, promote social networks, self esteem, resilience and communication skills. These in turn leading to rehabilitation, recovery and independent living.
We have built our project on the work already in progress at the Open Centre by our strong group of volunteers and Occupational Therapy students, offering workshops and taster sessions in photography, painting and drawing, relaxation/yoga, film club, scrabble. creative writing, sculpture, gardening, music and IT and access skills. These are small scaled activities clients can try out in a relaxed environment, without pressure to make a regular commitment.
These taster activities will help to restore wellbeing, regain confidence, build basic skills, raise aspirations, improve social and interpersonal skills and nurture talent.
Funding from the EU European Social Fund has enabled clients, who are ready, to take the next steps to work alongside established community artists developing their own individual work, in the mediums of painting, collage,drawing, text, stencil, textiles, photography, sculpture and music (both instrumental and vocal).
Clients have been involved in the planning, promotion and launch of their own group exhibition, “City Ciphers” being exhibited in City Spaces across Canterbury.
Working in partnership with professional artists, has enabled clients to bring a wealth of talent, skills and experiences to the project, contributing original and imaginative ideas, offering inspiration that they may not have considered before.
Through this innovative project, clients have engaged with their environment, have found their “space” in the City and a way of communicating with the wider community.