Worcestershire Arts Partnership Blog

Tuesday, 6 June 2017

Inspiring Futures through the Arts - 2017 / 2018 - ARTIST RECRUITMENT - deadline for response - Monday 26th June 2017

Inspiring Futures through the Arts 2017/18

Funded by the West Mercia Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner (OPCC), Worcestershire County Council (WCC), the Elmley Foundation, and led by Worcestershire Arts Partnership (WAP)


The Worcestershire Arts Partnership are looking to work with Artists and/or Arts Organisations on an exciting project with people over 18 who are at risk of offending or who have previously offended.

This project has been the result of a successful funding bid by WAP to the West Mercia Police and Crime Commissioner’s Grant Scheme.  It builds on the success of the same project in 2016/17 where over 60 people in Worcestershire who had offended, or were at risk of offending, engaged with arts activities, many of whom showing positive results.  A film of last year’s project can be seen here:   https://vimeo.com/216976305

We have established relationships with Warwickshire and West Mercia Community Rehabilitation Company (WWMCRC) – sometimes referred to as Probation – and with YSS Ltd, a community based support service for vulnerable people who face life challenges, and we plan to run sessions with their service users.

The aim is to reduce (re)offending by supporting people into accessing positive artistic activities and meeting an agreed set of outcomes with West Mercia Police.

We are looking for a wide range of art forms.

Last year’s artists provided very positive feedback about their experience on this project, having found it both rewarding and enjoyable.

What is expected of you:

-          Creation and delivery of a programme of artistic activity for a group of people referred by WWMCRC or YSS.  Programmes are likely to take the form of a 2 hour weekly session for an 8 week block.  (This 8 week block may be run three times with different service users).    



-          Each session to contribute to a range of outcomes for those who attend, such as increasing self-esteem, developing empathy with others, managing emotions.  The outcomes will be defined by the Outcome Star for Justice, on which you will be trained, but additionally we want you to enable participants to develop artistic skills.


-          The last sessions of each block to focus on embedding the learning and next steps for service users - this may include signposting to future training, apprenticeships, volunteering and mainstream activities.  Sustaining the impact is something that both we and our partners feel strongly about.


-          You will need to attend two training sessions, both provided by West Mercia Police;

o   Evaluation using the Outcome Star for Justice

o   Safeguarding training


-          You will need to complete an Outcome Star for at least half of the participants on your course – ideally measuring their progress three times, but at least twice (start and end).  You will be able to work with their key workers on this.


-          You will also need to keep a record of numbers attending each session and collect some qualitative data about their experiences – this may include photographs and quotes. 


-          You will need to have an up to date DBS certificate and be able to provide your DBS number on request



What support we will provide:


-          We will provide project management support for the whole project, someone who you can refer to and with whom you can raise any concerns


-          We will make the relationships with the other partners and will take referrals onto your course. 


-          We will provide the venues


-          We will request that partner key workers are in the room with you during the activity, or that you are in a building where that support exists and is readily available


-          We will provide you with a contribution to materials for your courses (up to £200 per artist)


-          We will provide you with media consent forms for clients to sign before any photography or filming takes place


-          We will recruit a film-maker to record some of your sessions, which aims to publicise the project, change perceptions about offenders, promote the work of WAP, but also can be used by your own organisation to show the work you do and help you with future funding applications and work


-          We will organise a training day for WAP members about cultural commissioning and our experiences with this project, at which you will receive a free place



Overall outcomes for the referred service users are that they will have:

-       Improved their position on their personal Outcome Star (last year’s clients all improved in 9 out of 10 areas on the Outcome Star whilst they were undertaking the arts courses)

-       Developed their interest and skills in the arts

-       Challenged their views of themselves and raised their aspirations

-       Engaged with learning

-       Connected with new education, training and employment opportunities as a result



-       Each weekly session (2 hours) will be paid at £150, inclusive of expenses and VAT

-       Attendance at the two training sessions will be paid at £100 to your organisation per training session

-       As stated above, up to £200 is available per artist as a contribution to any materials


How to apply

Please send a CV and a letter of no more than two sides of A4.  The letter needs to outline your experience and suitability in relation to the following criteria:


·         High quality arts activity

·         Experience of working in an arts context successfully with people who are at risk of offending or who have offended, or with vulnerable and disadvantaged people

·         Empathy, tolerance, tact and diplomacy

·         Experience of running arts activities to an agreed series of outcomes

·         Understanding of safeguarding procedures

·         Ability to evaluate social based outcomes

·         Ability to outline your programme of arts activity, including how it will contribute to the ‘overall outcomes’ above and how the learning may be embedded


-       A background – not necessarily in the arts - of working with vulnerable or disadvantaged people or people with mental health conditions, eg: working in social care


Please send applications to

Steve Wilson

County Arts Officer

Worcestershire County Council

By 4pm on Monday 26th June 2017


Shortlisted artists will then be asked to attend an interview in mid-July.  This will involve you providing a 20 minute taster session for service users who have agreed to contribute their views to the decision making process.  This will be followed by questions from project partners.  (As empathy and gaining the confidence of the client group is such an important part of these activities, we would like to see you engaging with service users before selection is made). 



Tender issued
Monday 5th June 2017
Closing date for submissions
Monday 26th June 2017 at 4pm
Interview date (NB: Interviews will be held with partners and service users)
W/c 10th July  
Artists selected
21st July 2017
Artist training (evaluation and safeguarding)
Expected August/September
Arts programme
Between Sept 2017 – Mar 2018
Post-programme evaluation
March 2018


Please note:

·         If you have an alternative proposal to the 8 week block model, but one which will deliver on the outcomes, please contact us to discuss this – it may well be that we will also welcome your application. 

·         Tailored projects for 13-16 year olds at risk of offending are also being developed in parallel.  Artists for this will be sought separately but you are welcome to apply for both.


If you have any enquires, please email Steve Wilson, County Arts Officer on swilson@worcestershire.gov.uk

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