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23/09/2021

Derry youth groups receive funding boost of up to £10,000 for arts development

Stage Beyond Derry
Five Derry based youth groups have been awarded funding to develop bespoke arts projects which promote positive health and wellbeing. A total of 21 groups across Northern Ireland have been offered funding worth £180,000 through the ARTiculate programme run by the Arts Council of Northern Ireland and the Public Health Agency. Many of the projects will work directly with groups of vulnerable young people and will focus on mental health issues. Dove House Community Trust, Foyle Down Syndrome Trust, An Gaelaras, Stage Beyond Theatre Company and Waterside Theatre Company are each set to receive between £8,000 - £10,000 to deliver their projects over the next twelve months. The groups will each have the opportunity to create their own bespoke arts project, working across a range of arts practices including, drama, dance, music, and visual arts. The latest announcement brings the total amount invested in this programme by the Arts Council and Public Health Agency up to £600,000, over a three year period Roisin McDonough, Chief Executive of the Arts Council of Northern Ireland, commented: “The Arts Council and Public Health Agency have been working together to fund arts project which will help young people to find their voice and address some of the issues which affect them most, whether that’s depression, bullying, exam worries or pressures at home. “The links between arts and wellbeing are now very well established and through these creative projects we can help young people learn new skills, grow in confidence, build resilience and improve their personal wellbeing.” Brendan Bonner Assistant Director Public Health (Health and Social Wellbeing Improvement), said: “The Public Health Agency looks at innovative ways to improve people’s health and wellbeing. This programme with the Arts Council is a perfect example of using the arts to give a voice to young people and encourage help-seeking behaviour. “The PHA recognises the positive impact that the arts can play in improving the mental health and wellbeing of our young people. Participants will benefit in a number of ways, such as making new friends and connections, developing new skills, gaining confidence in their abilities, and learning more about the help and support that is available on mental health.” Pictured: Members of Derry Theatre Group Stage Beyond.

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