“i loved using the household instruments to make music. i haven’t done that before.”participant
We designed creative:explorers during the COVID-19 lockdown in 2020 to give disabled children the opportunity to come together over Zoom (via our Create Live! digital delivery) to meet their school friends, and explore their creativity and self-expression in high quality creative arts workshops led by our professional artists. They made music, devised radio plays and created artwork.
The children learnt new skills, explored their homes and household objects in unexpected ways, and worked collaboratively to create artwork of which they were proud. Each project culminated in a sharing to which their families were invited. Coming together during lockdown helped the children to feel connected and continue learning, enhancing their wellbeing.
“IT WAS GOOD TO TALK ABOUT OUR EMOTIONS AND MAKE MUSIC AND ART TO SHOW HOW WE FEEL.”participant
Disabled people remain significantly less likely to participate in cultural, leisure and sporting activities than non-disabled people. The Centre for Excellence and Outcomes in Children and Young People’s Services’ ‘Improving the Wellbeing of Disabled Children’ report identifies numerous benefits of taking part in creative activities: “playing and interacting in inclusive activities and settings helps disabled young people’s social development, particularly in terms of their understanding of peer culture; they can allow disabled young people to learn and develop skills; they can also promote disabled young people’s sense of belonging to their local community.”
Disabled people are often socially excluded and eight out of 10 are bullied. According to a recent study by Scope, 67% of the British public feel uncomfortable talking to disabled people while 21% of 18-34 year-olds admit that they have actually avoided talking to a disabled person because they were unsure how to communicate with them. According to Scope, 24% of disabled people have experienced attitudes or behaviours where other people expected less of them because of their disability.
creative:explorers was designed to give children with special needs, and school staff access to the benefits of high-quality creative arts activities.