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.
The team at Rabbits Road host regular Tech Tribe and Raspberry Pi courses at the Old Manor Park Library. The sessions, aimed at those between 7-16 years of age, aim to offer skills in all things technology, from coding, to video game design, from programming to building computers. The hugely popular sessions run throughout the year and are free.
In 2018, Rabbits Road also ran a free Architecture School for 16-19 year olds interested in learning more about the profession of architecture. Across the 4 days (July 30th to August 2nd) participants explored communal spaces and reflect on the social impacts of architectural design. The school was an opportunity to pause and reflect on the relationship to home, the city and consider your place within it. Participants began to build up a portfolio and skills that could contribute to moving into the field of Architecture.
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, organised by a local young poet and was Barking and Dagenham’s first ever poetry slam, which is now a staple in local calendars. The Young Creatives meet fortnightly, developing professional skills and helping us to shape and deliver new activities for young people living in Dagenham.
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, took over the Useful + Beautiful Craft area. The theme this year was BODY BUILDERS, an experimental production lab of anatomical accessories that released a new wave of human hybrids into the festival. Each maker was partnered with a local young person, with the support of Create Jobs, who assisted the workshop and gave 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.
YOU ARE WHAT YOU EAT
You Are What You Eat is a series of films for YouTube devised, presented, co-directed and co-edited by a group of year sixes at Earlsmead Primary School in Tottenham, produced and co-directed by Dunya Kalantery in Summer 2018. With imagination, science and culture as tools, the purpose of the project was to put children’s voices first and to let them explore the questions:
What does it mean to be healthy?
How do our food, our culture and our health intersect?
Each stage of the journey was collaboratively reached with the children, from the format and structure of the episodes, to the core ideas, to the editing – with the group taking turns to devise content, act, direct, present, and finally work on the editing of the films.
Watch the films on YouTube here.
We Can Create is kindly supported by Bank of America Merrill Lynch, with additional support from the Garfield Weston Foundation