Having attended the last Disrupting Poverty event Feature Media, Interplay and Logistik decided to get together and try and disrupt poverty on their doorstep in the only way we know how – by being creative. Here’s what we’ve done so far:
I Love West Leeds Project
As 3 creative businesses/organisations in West Leeds we wanted to see what we could do to make a difference in our immediate area. To make a start Sharon from Logistik knew Jane Earnshaw the I Love West Leeds festival organiser, which is a community based arts festival and we invited her to our next meeting.
We discovered from her that her funding had been cut and that she was going to struggle to put on aspects of the festival at all. It may not necessarily seem like a ‘disrupting poverty’ issue but when we questioned Jane about the impact that it would have on the community if the festival was unable to go ahead, it was clear that we could not let this happen.
West Leeds covers, the Armley, Pudsey, Bramley, Farsley, Farnely, Stanningley and Calverley region primarily – a diverse community with some areas of prosperity and some of extreme poverty. It is also an area which is made of a variety of different cultures, languages and religions. I love West Leeds festival is an opportunity for everyone to come together to experience lots of different arts and also to raise awareness of what’s going on. Some families affected by poverty particularly don’t have a garden and will not get any sort of holiday or access to clubs…arts or otherwise. The festival could be the one opportunity to a family to have a wonderful and memorable day out, at no cost to them.
So Logistik, Feature Media and Interplay have volunteered our services to gather an army of volunteers to make the festival a real success:
- Sharon has contacted Leeds University and is mobilising volunteers to help us deliver flyers about the event the week before. We wanted to engage with the student community because they’re a large and willing group of people but also because they don’t really get to experience what West Leeds has to offer and we think this might encourage a few more to engage with this particular community in Leeds, perhaps even staying on to work here, buy homes in the area or just buy things from local businesses, putting more money into the economy.
- We have come up with an idea for a wooden ‘terracotta inspired army’, which we will send out to school, libraries, churches and temples and local businesses to paint up as they see fit. Logistik are using their mammoth cutter. It could be of them or a representation of them, with information about the music or films they love or their hobbies. These will then be displayed around West Leeds in homes and shop fronts. In addition to creating a buzz in the community, we’re also hoping that it will attract visitors from outside West Leeds.
- Interplay will be making some films about what it’s like living in West Leeds, with local young people.
We have put together a schedule of activity and are looking forward to getting started…everyone welcome to the festival in July – will let you know the date when we meet on the 27th April.
Corporate Responsibility Manager