The Council’s Summer Arts College marks 10 Years of Success
For the past ten summers, Telford & Wrekin Council has been running a three-week arts programme for care experienced young people aged 14-19 years old.
Young people are referred to the Summer Arts College by the council’s Children’s Services workers. The programme offers them the opportunity to explore creative arts and different career opportunities as well as to gain an accredited qualification.
The Summer Arts College is part of the council’s ongoing commitment to support the borough’s care experienced young people into their adult life.
Councillor Shirley Reynolds, Cabinet Member for Early Years, Children and Young People said: “We know that care experienced young people face additional challenges as they move into adulthood and we want to help them as much as we can.
“Celebrating a decade of success, the Summer Arts College run by our council is a remarkable programme that empowers young people to explore diverse art forms, nurturing their creativity and opening future opportunities.
“What’s unique to this programme is that students can bring their personal creative preferences into it and choose what they want to explore.
“The artworks that our students produced over these ten years have been fantastic. We are immensely proud of their achievements, well done to all of them! “
Rod Grainger, Personal Adviser – Children in Care, Leaving Care at Telford and Wrekin Council said:
“We work with care experienced young people to raise aspirations and assist with their personal and professional development, through a wide range of activities, workshops and tailored mentoring.
“The Summer Arts College has again been a real success this year, with amazing artworks produced by our students.
“We can hardly believe the programme has reached its 10 years milestone, it has made such a positive impact on the lives of all participants.”
Here is what some of the students who attended the programme over the past 10 years said about it:
•“I find the studio experience incredible. Working with professional artists is a real buzz.”(Josh)
•“It’s helped me with my confidence, made me feel less isolated. The experience is really unique and explores the creative arts, which I really enjoy.” (Richard)
•“Summer Arts College is fun. I learn new skills, improve my confidence and communication.” (Faye)
Telford & Wrekin Council’s Summer Arts College, which runs for three weeks in August, enables care experienced young people to research, participate and engage in a range of creative arts such as dance, creative writing, music production and other art forms.
In addition to exploring individual areas of interest, students participating in the programme come together as a group to produce collaborative pieces of original artwork, such as large pieces of graffiti art.
Every year the Summer Arts College culminates in a live performance event, where students have the opportunity to showcase the creative art skills they’ve developed and to give live performances.
All the students enrolled in the Summer Arts College achieve an accredited qualification through the college’s affiliation with the Trinity College of London and the Arts Council England.
Photo caption: Councillor Shirley Reynolds, Telford & Wrekin Council's Cabinet Member for Early Years, Children and Young People holding the "10" celebration balloons with students and staff at the Summer Arts Programme Live Event in August 2023