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Helping hand for arts charity

Headways Arts, which received �8,000 from the Coalfields Community Investment Programme, runs a variety of arts sessions, such as print-making, pictured.
Headways Arts, which received �8,000 from the Coalfields Community Investment Programme, runs a variety of arts sessions, such as print-making, pictured.

Headways Arts has been given a cash boost to extend its work offering activities to disabled people, thanks to the Coalfields Community Investment Programme.

The Blyth-based charity received £8,482 from the programme, run by the Coalfields Regeneration Trust, to fund a full-time learning support worker for the next six months.

Participants enjoy a dance session run by the charity.

Participants enjoy a dance session run by the charity.

The money will give people with learning difficulties and communication needs the chance to get involved in arts-based activities.

Frances Castle, chief executive of Headway Arts, said: “The Coalfields funding received will make all the difference to those who participate in the activities provided by Headway Arts.

“Creativity can have a huge influence on building confidence and communication skills, while also giving people an opportunity to express themselves. Employing a learning support worker means that we are able to extend our service and help more people to gain key skills and build up their confidence and self-esteem.

“We have seen first-hand what can be achieved when attendees take part in these activities and the funding will allow us to continue to make a positive difference to those who can become socially isolated.”

Headway Arts specialises in highly inclusive projects, offering opportunities for people to contribute to their community while building confidence and creativity.

The new worker will assist colleagues and individuals by planning and running a variety of arts activities within the community.

The charity will also receive support from the Coalfields Regeneration Trust, with access to help with third-party funding applications and bid-writing, and tips on effective promotion and marketing.

Andy Lock, head of operations (England) for the trust, said: “We know that creative sessions and art-based classes can have a really positive impact on those with learning difficulties or disability, so providing support for Headway Arts means that the communities can continue to offer the support needed to people who are typically some of the hardest to reach.

“Health is one of our key priorities for action so knowing that the services that we are supporting are making a difference also means that we are helping to address the ongoing challenges in coalfield communities.”