Using the power of the creative arts to transform lives. 

Why are we here?

Every day, we reach out to the most disadvantaged and vulnerable children and young people. We work with six groups of vulnerable young people:

1) Young patients: Finding themselves removed from home and undergoing medical treatment, young patients often feel frightened, anxious and lonely.

2) Children with disabilities: Last year, the number of recorded hate crimes against people with disabilities rose by over 40%. A shocking 180 disability hate crimes happen every day in the UK.

3) Young carers: In the UK, 700,000 children and young people provide household or medical care for a disabled or unwell mum, dad or sibling. Because of the strain of their responsibilities, they often experience social isolation and stress.

4) Schoolchildren in areas of deprivation: Many inner-city children have little access to the arts and may struggle to escape the cycle of poverty due to a lack of self-confidence and opportunities.

5) Young offenders: Last year alarming levels of despair and low self-esteem were reported in British prisons: four in 10 prisoners are reported to have self-harmed in 2015/16 and suicides have risen by 28%, the highest since 1999.

6) Young LGBT people: Two in five LGBT pupils have attempted or thought about taking their own life because of bullying. 59% of transgender young people say that they have self-harmed, compared with 8.9% of all 16 to 24-year olds.

How does Create tackle this need?

1) Young patients: Our interactive music and movement workshops elevate the spirits of anxious children in hospital. Every workshop rings with singing, dancing & laughter, reinvigorating each child’s sense of freedom & individuality.

2) Children with disabilities: We combat disability prejudice and hate crimes by uniting young people with & without disabilities at an early age. Collaborating to create a sculpture, animations or songs, friendships between the young people spring into life quickly and organically.

3) Young carers: We give young carers the freedom to express their creativity, energy and personality through joyful creative arts workshops. By spending time with other young people who understand the pressures of caring, they can build trust, friendship and vital supportive networks.

4) Schoolchildren in areas of deprivation: Using the visual arts, vulnerable children in inner city schools can scribble, sculpt and sketch their way to enhanced self-esteem, enabling them to build the emotional resilience they need to cope with challenging circumstances.

5) Young offenders: We’re confronting self-harm and low self-esteem in British prisons by giving young fathers in prison an emotive creative outlet to explore their feelings & develop pride & self-esteem. Focusing on their role as a parent, they create stirring storybooks and profound personal messages for their children.

6) Young LGBT people: We’re taking a creative and innovative new approach to supporting LGBT young people. Using a broad selection of rich and inspiring artforms, we help each young person develop self-confidence and essential supportive relationships as they begin to explore their identity.

About Create

Create makes society fairer by connecting the most disadvantaged people to the power of the creative arts.

We know that unleashing creativity ignites imaginations, develops confidence and builds relationships. Like setting off a firework, our professional artists light the touch paper and our participants discover new found self-belief and a desire to try more, do more and be more.

We know from experience that music can help ease the anguish of a parent with a terminally ill child, that drama can build an isolated young carer’s self-esteem and that storytelling can strengthen the bond between a young offender and the loved ones waiting for them at home. 

One spark of creative energy opens up a world of positive opportunities. Create lights that spark.

Gemma’s Story

Thirteen-year-old Gemma has been caring for her mother, who has multiple sclerosis, since she was just three or four. A typical week for Gemma includes household chores like washing clothes, shopping for food and cooking, leaving little time for her to spend time with friends. Last year she worked with other young carers and Create’s professional photographer.

“I care for my mum. Sometimes she’s in so much pain that she finds it difficult to walk or even make a cup of tea, and that’s when I have to help out. She had a relapse recently, and there were times when she just broke down and cried because it was so unbelievably hard for her. That has a knock-on effect on me.

“Caring is not something I talk about to others because they might not understand, but during Create’s workshops I met another young carer whose mum also has MS. Because her situation is quite similar, I felt like I could talk to her. It helps to be around other young carers because they understand what you’re going through. 

“Create’s workshops help you open up to other people about yourself. It was interesting to learn about them and helped build my confidence. It felt great to spend time outside the house and take pictures. I’ve learnt how to take different types of pictures and how to convey my personality through photographs, and it’s a lot of fun.”

The Create Website