A World of Stories
As we near our last Family Theatre session of 2015 this December, we have been reflecting on this wonderful project, and how important it is to us to engage with our local community, and particularly with early years, through theatre.
The project started in January 2015 with a small grant from Bristol Green Capital, and we set out on a brand new adventure with partners Dragonbird Theatre and Barton Hill Settlement Family Centre.
Over the year we have sparked the imagination of 231 children aged 0-4 years old, and 146 adults in free monthly family theatre sessions with themes around nature and the environment. These fun filled sessions are brought to life with a mini-theatre show, followed by a play session with magical props, costumes, poetry, rhyme and song.
It has been a delight working with Barton Hill Settlement Family Centre, and the families that take their children there. There were a couple of things we discovered that we’d like to share with you…
* From our audience feedback, we know that 69% of families said they had made new friends with people from different backgrounds and cultures. Our sessions were a truly integrated space, and it was wonderful seeing children and parents from a variety of cultures and backgrounds, listening, learning and playing together.
* We found out that 52% of participants rarely take their children to arts activities, and that many of these families have had very little contact with theatre as an art form. For many of the children this was their first theatrical experience, and having seen the level of engagement of their little ones, said they would be more inclined to pay for a ticket to any future theatrical events.
We have plans to expand this project to include a local Nursery School in Barton Hill, as well as the Family Centre. We want to offer the community three sessions per month, to reach 40 more children in this deprived ward of Bristol.
We are currently seeking to raise £500 to keep this as a free service for the families of Barton Hill in the New Year. If you would like to support this project please visit our donations page. A donation of just £10 would pay for one family to attend one session, but any amount you give would really help support this fantastic project.