Fatama’s story: creative adventures with young people with disabilities
Between January and March 2017, Create partnered with with Surjamuki Project in east London to deliver a 12 week creative project with young people with disabilities. Fatama is a Project Worker at Surjamuki Project. This is her experience of creative:connection:
“Our young people have been working with Create’s project with woodwork, artwork and film. I can think of so many examples of them enjoying the project. They enjoyed every second. There was not one thing that they did not enjoy.
“Today they just completed the film. Wow, they could act! We’ve done role play in the past, but putting it into action in a video and in a film, that’s something new for us. They got everything together, you guys worked really hard with them; I thought it was a really nice adventure. As soon as you talk about the film, there’s a big smile on the young people’s faces.
“Some of my young members never did anything in woodwork because they were too scared of the cutting and everything but when they started working with Create’s project they really enjoyed it. Now they’ve enjoyed it so much that we’re planning to do something like that in the future again. So I would say if I had to rate that project one to ten, I would say 100% ten.
“I believe everybody deserves the chance to do something creative. My young people learned to work in groups and it gives them the opportunity to socialise. Some of my young people don’t socialise with other young people, the only socialising they do is when they’re doing some activity like this.
“I have one young person – when she started here, she used to be very quiet, not talking to anyone at all because she went through a really hard time in life, and when she started with us it was one or two words, that would be it. And now, after the projects that they’ve done with Create, she’s socialising more with the young people around her, talking more, laughing more. She wakes up extra early just to come to us, her mum was saying. So things like that, they mean a lot to us.
“A young person with autism who loves his routine, when he started with Create, the first two projects, he thought: ‘No, I don’t want to do something new’. But then the more he came, the more he enjoyed it. Now he enjoys it and he’s learnt how to deal with a bit of difference. So three different projects we’ve done, and three different changes and he adjusted to it straight away, and that’s something we picked up on. We were shocked, and that’s something new for a young person at Surjamuki.”
The Big Day is a horror film made by the Surjamuki Project participants, led by professional filmmaker Lesley Pinder.