Our Learning, Education and Participation (LEAP) department runs a number of bespoke projects each year for vulnerable young people living in West Sussex with little or no access to the arts. One such initiative is organised in partnership with asphaleia, a charity specialising in welfare, fostering and training services, based in Worthing. Our LEAP team run weekly outreach workshops in Worthing for a group of young unaccompanied asylum seekers, to improve their English language, communication and social skills.
Last week, the ground-breaking physical performance company Barely Methodical Troupe (who brought their show Bromance to the Chichester Spiegeltent last autumn) took up residency at CFT for four days, working with asphaleia’s young learners: exploring their stories and combining them with circus and acrobatic skills, as inspiration to create an informal performance piece titled Us: Untold Stories.
19 year-old Freddie Dempster, our Youth and Outreach Trainee – an alumnus of Bishop Luffa School and Chichester Festival Youth Theatre – ran the partnership project as part of his Gold Arts Award. The aim was to help the young people integrate into the community and all involved hailed it as ‘wonderful’.
‘It gives the participants the opportunity to do something completely different and really helps them to develop their communication and teamwork skills,’ says Emma Hotston from asphaleia.