Arc news: March 2013
Finding the Words with Jon Snow!
Our girls group has had an extraordinary few weeks we are sure they'll never forget - starting with an exciting trip to Channel 4!
On 12 February, four of our fantastic Finding the Words participants - Sarah-Esosa, Ebun, Sefunmi and Precious, travelled to London's ITN Studios in Gray's Inn Road to meet Arc's brand new Patron, newscaster Jon Snow!
Along with Artistic Director Carole Pluckrose, Project Leader Natalie Smith and Communications Manager Theresa Snooks, our girls were lucky enough to get a unique behind-the-scenes tour of the television studios before sitting in on Jon's live evening show for Channel 4! They also enjoyed quizzing him about his career and work and were amazed when he later tweeted about their visit!
Of his new role with Arc, Jon said; "Arc is quite simply drama in action. I was led to it by Neville Lawrence whose son Stephen was the victim of racist gang murder twenty years ago. We were at the brilliant Arc production staged in Stephen's memory. As someone who has worked with disdvantaged and vulnerable young people through the New Horizon Youth Centre in Euston, I had no doubt that what I was seeing in Barking really does represent 'theatre for change'. I am very proud to have been invited to become a Patron. The people of Barking and Dagenham are fortunate indeed to have the inspiration and achievements of Carole Puckrose and her amazing team in their midst."
Newsreader and journalist Jon joins Neville Lawrence OBE as Patron of Arc. To find out more about Jon and Neville, visit our Who We Are page.
On 25 February, the excitement continued for our group as Borough Commander Andy Ewing of Barking & Dagenham Police hosted a special Commendation Event at The Malthouse Studios.
Before awarding a special Certificate of Commendation to each individual participant, Commander Ewing said of the project; “I first watched the Finding the Words film some weeks ago now, but I have not forgotten the initial impression it made upon me. The sheer application, teamwork and dedication apparent in the making of the film, let alone that given to the delivery and wider dissemination through the performances is very remarkable. What stands out for me is the profound impression that the work will have had on the cast, and how it will demonstrate to them just what they can achieve both individually and collectively should they chose to.
"Any work which encourages young people to be able make and take choices which take them forward in life must be a good thing. I really hope that in time the girls will take forward the undoubted confidence gained from the project and influence others; particularly young men, to show that choices do exist and that violence in particular takes none of us anywhere. I am very much looking forward to making Borough Commander Commendation Awards to all of the girls and would like to take this opportunity to congratulate Natalie and the team at Arc for such inspired work.”
About Finding the Words
From April until October 2012, 23 young women aged 12-18 from five schools across the London Borough of Barking & Dagenham took part in Arc's ground-breaking new female-empowerment project, funded by the Paul Hamlyn Foundation.
Arc's Finding the Words young leaders' project began by focusing on practical workshop sessions to explore female exploitation, abuse and youth violence. The multi-media programme employed a range of dynamic techniques and teaching methods to embrace poetry, performance, public-speaking, script-writing and film-making, culminating in the launch of a powerful documentary film and booklet resource. Finally, our team of passionate, creative and committed young women developed and delivered a unique touring programme that was seen by over 1150 young people around the Borough, sparking debate and discussion on some extremely hard-hitting subjects.
Every participant worked hard to produce a really thought-provoking and memorable resource giving a strong voice to young women in the debate about female exploitation. As well as working towards their Bronze Arts Award, our team was also shortlisted for the Barking & Dagenham Rising Star Awards 2013.