The Arts Champions Scheme is a Birmingham City Council initiative that gets Birmingham based arts organisations working with residents in their local area.
mac birmingham has been part of the Arts Champion scheme for 13 years, working previously with residents in the Hodge Hill and Yardley districts. Arts Champion activties in these areas have included Generation Craft: a craft-based project that paired a local craft artist with community groups in Yardley; The Grand Dance: an intergenerational project exploring going out, music and dancing; a photographic portrait project working with Pakistani boys and young men from Stechford and a writing competition in association with Yardley libraries - amongst many other things.
This year, mac birmingham is Arts Champion for the Hall Green area. We are currently working with Fluxx theatre company on Gameplan: a show that has been created following workshops and consultations with residents of Hall Green that presents a mix of theatre and debate addressing immediate concerns.
The boys involved had never visited a professional arts organisation or seen an exhibition before so they learned how to look at visual imagery and an exhibition and to see how it related to their lives and be inspired by it
I felt privileged to be part of this project, and an unexpected bonus of being part of it was that it gave me the opportunity to dress up like my Nan!