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a brick wall

The difference artwork can make during a dark time in life…

Funded by your donations, The Playhouse Street Talk project is based in Derry/ Londonderry, Northern Ireland. Deirdre MackleYouth Engagement Officer for the Derry Playhouse talks about what the work entails and why it’s so important.  

Street Talk is a multi-media art project that engages artists with groups of vulnerable young people (aged 12-18) through exciting programmes of art workshops in a wide variety of art forms. The project enables young people to creatively address issues including youth justice issues, and crime Justice and citizenship. The young people work with artists through art workshops, learn a variety of skills and get to design their own pieces of artwork.  

A graffiti artist painting on a wall

The programme also provides the opportunity to become involved in Open College Network (OCN) courses. The OCN could either be in Young People and Youth Justice or Crime, Justice and Citizenship. For many of the young people, this is the first certificate that they have received and a chance for them to develop a more positive attitude towards education. 

BBC Children in Need Fund part salary and part programme costs of the Street Talk youth arts project. This funding goes towards co-ordination and facilitation costs of youth focussed arts projects based around youth justice issues.

A graffiti artist painting on a wall

The programme is so important as it enables young people to explore issues that are relevant to their everyday lives and make more positive life choices. Participating in the programme has also increased levels of self confidence among young people; for example, through group work and also through hosting a public event for the community in which they live. It also acts as a deterrent by providing a greater awareness of the impact that becoming involved in crime and anti-social behaviour has on the lives of young people, their families and community.   

The Playhouse Street Talk project is bringing groups of young people together for the first time since the pandemic lockdown. Artists will be engaged with five groups throughout Derry between now and August. These projects will culminate in a one-day public art showcase on Tuesday 24th August, in the Walled Garden of St. Columbs’ Park House. The showcase is themed around human rights in relation to young people, with a focus on the UN Convention of the Rights of a Child. 

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