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Posted onPosted on 22nd Oct

A new project is under way to provide arts and cultural activities for children in social care or those looked after by family members of foster families.

Mansfield Palace Theatre is working with Inspire Youth Arts and Captivate, the cultural education partnership for Mansfield and Ashfield, to create a project providing opportunities specifically for Looked After Children.

Looked After Children are those in social care or looked after by family members or foster families. The project aims to provide arts and cultural activities for children aged 8 to 19 years and their families whilst helping to produce, shape and take part in the arts.

The partners are keen to hear from people who wish to put ideas forward and discuss what type of activities they would like to participate in the future.

Vanessa Oxspring, Captivate partnership manager, said: “There is a vital creative input role that is currently missing with our county’s Looked After Children and we know that creativity could boost confidence, support mental health and wellbeing, and make a difference through these challenging times. We want to ensure cared for children and young people are not forgotten about and get the best opportunities to reach their fullest potential.”

Coun Amanda Fisher, portfolio holder for community safety and wellbeing at Mansfield District Council, added: “Within Nottinghamshire, there are communities with some of country’s highest levels of deprivation, including Mansfield and Ashfield. The levels of arts and youth engagement by Looked After Children is particularly low.

“With this particular project, I support the outcomes by hoping to empower LAC’s to think creatively, be responsible citizens, be happier and healthier individuals, creative thinkers and feel positive about the new normal.”

Christopher Neil, education manager at the theatre, said: “There are lots of ways we can explore arts and culture. However, we are keen to hear what potential participants want to do which will help guide us in creating exciting projects for them to immerse themselves in next year.”

Some of the activity suggestions so far include visual arts such as painting, sculpture, photography and VJing; performing arts such as dance, drama; singing, songwriting, MCIng and music production; visiting arts events from outdoor festivals to exhibitions, performances and plays; leadership skills from hosting your own YouTube channel, fundraising for a charity, working on a festival or a performance, organising a zoom dance class, taking part in Tik Tok or creating an iMovie.

The project is funded through The Mighty Creatives and is run in partnership with Nottinghamshire County Council.

To become involved contact Christopher Neil on [email protected] or visit