Create is a multi-award-winning charity empowering lives, reducing isolation and enhancing wellbeing through the creative arts.

Our professional artists run creative arts projects with children and adults facing challenges in their lives. They are given a chance to express themselves, build skills, meet other people and boost their wellbeing through music, dance, painting, photography, drama and a host of other artforms.

We prioritise our work with seven participant groups:

● young patients in psychiatric hospitals
● disabled children and adults
● young and adult carers
● schoolchildren in areas of deprivation
● older people
● young and adult prisoners
● marginalised children and adults (eg: asylum seekers; refugees; homeless adults; LGBTQ+ young people)

We know from experience that drama can build an isolated young carer’s self-esteem, that storytelling can strengthen the bond between a prisoner and the loved ones waiting for them at home, and that music can provide an important means of self-expression for a young person experiencing anxiety or depression.

Our focus is on engaging the most marginalised participants across the UK in inspiring, sustainable arts programmes in areas where provision is poor and engagement in the arts is low. We believe that everyone – regardless of circumstances, behaviour, age, gender, race or disability – deserves the chance to engage with the creative arts.

Championing local priorities

We’re a national charity that champions local priorities. Each project is developed and delivered in collaboration with one or more partner organisations that have specialist knowledge of their local area and the participants that they exist to serve. This ensures that every project meets local need and is carefully tailored to participants’ interests and preferences.

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impact that lasts

Every project we deliver is rigorously evaluated because we’re passionate about providing inspiring and empowering creative experiences that have a lasting impact. We also evaluate the longer-term impact of our work through our Making it Matter initiative, which revisits two projects each year, 6-24 months after they took place.

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How we do it

Each year we design and run hundreds of creative arts workshops with children and adults who have few opportunities to come together and be creative. We work with other charities, day centres, carer services, schools, psychiatric hospitals, homeless shelters, prisons and other partners that have a low arts provision. Many projects culminate in participants’ showcase of their work, celebrating their achievements and giving them a voice.

Each project is individually tailored to meet participants’ interests and needs. Each has four key ingredients:

1. professional artists

All our artists work professionally in their field. Additionally, they have extensive experience of delivering projects in community settings, bringing their skills and passion. We work with actors, circus artists, dancers, musicians, photographers, visual artists, writers and zine artists, among many others.

2. Local Partner organisation

We always partner with another organisation to deliver our projects. This can be another charity, day centre, carer service, school, hospital, homeless shelter, prison or other group that supports vulnerable children and adults. Visit this page to find out more.

3. Create Project Manager

A project manager oversees each project and attends every workshop. They do the planning, safeguarding and evaluation, enabling our artists to focus entirely on our participants.

4. Time & Space to Create

Our projects take place at venues where we can be loud or make a mess. Each consists of a series of half or full-day workshops across a range of time periods from mini-residencies to year-long programmes. Each depends on the needs of our participants and the funding available.

A Wealth of Stages

Our projects

Click to find out more about our award-winning creative arts projects

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Our Mission & Values

Explore our mission, aims and values – and how they inform everything we do

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awards we’ve won …

Charity of the year

Charity Times Charity of the Year: with an income of less than £1 million

Young carers award

Children & Young People Now Young Carers

Digital transformation

Charity Times Digital Transformation of the Year