Thursday, 26 April 2012

A Way Out Design Hub

Over the last few weeks, the girls taking part in our Heart2Change program have been part of a very exciting set of workshops run by the wonderful Lucy from Design Hub Artworks which has formed part of the life skills component of their course.

Although I have mainly just seen Lucy hanging around at the photocopier, she has in fact been teaching our service users how to design and make their own bags and t-shirts. Starting with a hand-drawn design, these were then scanned in Photoshop where they were edited and colour was added. The designs were then printed out onto transfer sheets which could be applied to bags or tops.

This is such an amazing way to teach the girls new skills, help them to grow in confidence and spend time together as a group. And as you can see the results are beautiful:

And not only have the girls been making their own items but they are now being sold across Teesside! A couple of the girls went to the Fashion Show held on Saturday night to sell their products and they are planning to get to a craft fair soon. But if you are interested in purchasing one of these limited edition items then don't hesitate to get in touch! (All profit goes to supporting the work of A Way Out.)

Love from A Way Out x

Thursday, 19 April 2012

In the beginning...

You may have noticed that over the last couple of weeks we've been posting on YouTube an interview I did with Jessie, finding out a bit more about how A Way Out started and where is it going in the future. And you can now watch all three parts of the video right here:

Jessie talks her inspiration to found A Way Out and shares some of the stories that most impacted her decision.

So what happened next? How did the dream become a reality? How has it changed over the years?

And what's coming next?! A Way Out has an exciting future. Listen in to some of Jessie's dreams...

We don't think much more needs to be said here! Have a watch, get inspired and as always let us know what you think!

Love from A Way Out x

Thursday, 12 April 2012

We Know How To Have A Good Holiday!

Hello and welcome back! We've been away for a couple of weeks but we now have lots of exciting things to update you on.

Today Lizzie, our Education Development worker, told me about what she and the rest of the team have been up to with our younger service users...

"We feel recreational & positive activities are so important at A Way Out. Many people will have childhood memories that they will cherish: picnics, paddling in the sea, playing sports on the beach, going to see annual pantomime, going on a bike ride, the list goes on. Often young people we work with for various reason may not have that opportunity to create those memories."

That's where A Way Out comes in!

"Our holiday activities aim to:

Provide young people with positive experiences
Raise Aspirations
Give young people simple enjoyment, joy & fun
Improve community cohesions & integration
Give young people a sense of acceptance and belonging
Reduce isolation & loneliness
Prevent boredom during the holiday that may lead to risk taking behaviour
Build relationships that may lead to further support for the young person.

So these are some of the things we've been doing:

Weve had over a 100 Easter eggs donated from A Way Out staff, family & friends, churches and local business. Weve given out 106 so far and will continue to distribute them the rest of the week."

We started with an Easter bonnet competition in one of our school groups:

"Then we had an afternoon on Port Clarence distributing Easter Eggs and playing games on the field. We met lots of new young people and were able to invite them to our Saltburn beach trip happening later on in the week."

"Tuesday, outreach workers, Mark and Matty took some lads to Preston Park for a BBQ and a game of Crazy golf. Much to his delight, Mark won!"

"Wednesday, we had a very wet & muddy trip up to Roseberry Topping,  a very quick picnic at the top as a storm was on its way and then made our way back down. 12 out the 13 young people had never been up before so it was certainly a new experience for them and they felt quite proud when they made it to the top! Especially the young people that were scared of heights!"

"And today we are having a girls treat to bowling and pizza hut and tomorrow we are ending the holiday with a beach trip to Saltburn providing the weather is okay... There might have to be a contingency plan of the cinema if not!"

Love from A Way Out x
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