We Can Create
As life for many young Londoners becomes more challenging and precarious than ever, We Can Create offers meaningful opportunities for young people to take an active role in the changes taking place in their city.
We Can Create builds on our work with young people over the last decade and is influenced by findings from the Panic! report (2018). Each project gives young people a chance to develop a multitude of skills. Starting with the lived experience of our young participants, we recognise that they are the experts when it comes to making decisions about the places they live and the culture they want to experience. We support young people to take an active role in shaping these places in collaboration with creative practitioners and agencies such as artists, architects, activists and local authorities.
Working site by site, and finding opportunities within Create’s citywide programme and partnerships, we focus specifically on areas of London experiencing periods of considerable change, as these are contexts where young people can feel especially marginalised and excluded. We Can Create looks to address the specific experiences, problems, languages and histories that arise from living within the city and the need for opportunities that foster connection, exploration, learning and action in response to the real conditions of a city in flux.
Our current We Can Create projects are:
Interchange brings together a new collective of talented, young creative practitioners aged 18-24 and provides a supportive space for them to meet regularly, to innovate, co-create and learn.
Interchange has been set up in response to the growing challenges faced by many young people in London who want to start a career in the cultural and creative sector. The group will focus on Londoners from diverse backgrounds and is a response to the Panic! report (2018) which revealed the structural barriers facing many attempting to establish a career in these industries.
In 2018/19, Interchange members have been selected from Create Jobs and Panic! traineeship alumni and the group have interests spanning art, design, curating, fashion, architecture and social entrepreneurialism. We will seek to provide paid opportunities for members of the group within the Create London programme, to share contacts, tools and resources to help develop their practices and will support funding bids by those in the group as well as offering careers advice, small grants for new projects led by the group and ongoing mentoring.
One of the Making Places public realm commissions in Waltham Forest’s Making Places places young people at the very heart of its project.
Build Up are working with local young people to build a community space for everyone living on an estate in Aldriche Way. Every young person aged 14-18 living on the estate has been invited to get involved in co-designing the project and to learn valuable skills around construction. We have been helping to facilitate workshops in the lead up to the build to hear from the local young people about what they want for their area.
Town Gas is a group of local young adults aged 16-24 from Hackney who, together with artist Aaron Angell, oversaw the construction of London’s only publicly accessible gas-fire kiln. The young adults have been trained to run the pottery workshops for the wider community in Hoxton and through participation in the project, are developing new transferable skills to support their future ambitions in education and employment.
WHITE HOUSE YOUNG CREATIVES GROUP
Now well-established in the Dagenham area, The White House has set up a Youth Group to lead and curate events at the house. The first project was Sofa Slam in March, organised by a local young poet and was Barking and Dagenham’s first ever poetry slam. The Young Creatives meet fortnightly, developing professional skills and helping us to shape and deliver new activities for young people living in Dagenham.
NORTH WOOLWICH RAILWAY LINE
This year will see the start of a programme of developments in North Woolwich led by muf architecture/art which will transform the east end of the disused former railway line. The first phase is the build of a brewery: for many Londoners the artisan brewery is the archetypal symbol of gentrification, but here it is turned on its head – this will be a ‘teaching brewery’, one that proactively recruits local apprentices into training and delivers job opportunities that positively cultivate diversity and inclusion. The build itself will incorporate a readiness to work scheme, involving young people in the design and build of the brewery, a new public garden and a range of public realm improvements.
WALTHAMSTOW GARDEN PARTY
For the 2018 instalment of Walthamstow Garden Party (14/15 July), the Blackhorse Workshop, which we helped establish with Assemble in 2014, will be taking over the Useful + Beautiful Craft area. The theme this year will be BODY BUILDERS, an experimental production lab of anatomical accessories that will release a new wave of human hybrids into the festival. Each maker will be partnered a local young person, with the support of Create Jobs, who will assist the workshop and give practical support throughout the weekend, providing them with practical experience of delivering public activity and an insight into the world of design, making and event management.
We Can Create is kindly supported by Bank of America Merrill Lynch