I was the Writer in Residence for Newham Libraries in a venture conceived by Spread the Word and Newham Libraries and Arts Service together with Arts Council England. The project aimed to increase the number of residents in the borough of Newham actively involved in creative writing and literature.
Working with 14-18 year olds in Kingsford and Langdon School I piloted The Hero In You Project. It attempts to help young people identify with positive role models from similar cultural backgrounds as well looking at, and attempting to relate this, to their personal life experiences. It puts the icons/ Heroes into a socio-political context, identifying the characteristics required from within to bring about positive change. Anticipating that the borough of Newham will be a magnet for heroes in 2012, this project allows young people to find the heroic elements of their own backgrounds. After six sessions in each school there were rehearsals and then a showcase at Stratford Circus. My Focus was to ensure that there was empowerment through self-awareness. However, other outcomes included
i) Develop interest and enthusiasm for using language.
ii) Enhance communication through reading, writing and performance.
iii) Address cultural diversity and act as positive role model for youth.
iv) Present a positive image of young people to the general public of Newham