Kent Young Arts Day 2013

On Wednesday 16 October your Young Arts Representative, Lee Cary, attended the Kent Young Arts Day, which this year was held at Ryarsh Village Hall.

The day began with a short presentation from Jennifer Longton, Kent Area Young Arts Representative, who outlined the NADFAS Young Arts scheme and the work that had been done during the year. This was followed by short notes from each of the participants (representatives from various Kent DFAS), who commented briefly on what their Societies had been able to achieve during the preceding 12 months. It transpired that we all face the same challenges and potential rewards.

After a buffet lunch we were able to visit the local primary school, which had benefited from a grant from the local DFAS. The school had chosen to invite an artist from the Arts for Schools programme who worked with Year 3 and 4 pupils to create a permanent 3D sculptured structure which had been installed in the school play area/garden. Two pupils explained what they had all done to create the installation. The children were still very enthusiastic about the project, even though it had been undertaken as long ago as May last year.

On our return to the hall the school’s Deputy Head, Jo Mallins, gave a short talk to give us more detail about how and why the project had been selected, how the work had been integrated into the curriculum and what the legacy had been.

Our second afternoon speaker was Rose Kigwana, a Programme Manager from Artswork, who is responsible for Arts Awards in the South East. She explained the Arts Awards programme and pointed out that it is similar in structure to the D of E Awards but with special reference to the Arts. Rose gave some examples of how NADFAS can help with individual projects in this area.

Finally we were addressed by a representative of English Heritage, who explained how their Arts Education programme currently operates, some of the resources available to teachers and how NADFAS can help to support various projects.

This was a very valuable day, and has given some excellent ideas as to how we can progress our own Young Arts funding. In the light of what was learnt today your Committee will now consider what our budget for Young Arts might be for this year, and how best to use this funding to support young people.