Groups were nominated in this category having ‘Achieved more than they could have imagined'. The category was shortlisted by Graham Hewitson, prior Communities Lead Officer and current volunteer in the Forfar community. Helpfully assisted by Mhairi Dickson and Jennifer Anderson, Angus Council Communities Officers given the decision was so difficult! 6 groups progressed to the next stage where a winner and runner up were then chosen by a panel of Mark Armstrong, Depute Chief Executive for Angus Council, Councillors Mark McDonald and Lynne Devine and Pauline Rettie, Communities Officer for Angus Council. Here are the results!
Winners : Angus Expressive Arts Project
Young people worked with staff from across Angus in small local groups to explore their feelings and experience of COVID 19. In Forfar the group chose to use painted art as their medium and worked together to create a mural which combined their individual efforts and also the group effort. The mural was displayed outside Forfar Westend Football club for the public to see. The Arbroath group used a comic book as their medium. All group members have a copy of this to keep and it was distributed in Carnoustie to S1 pupils. The project gave young people an opportunity to express themselves and explore their feelings and work towards moving forward following a challenging time. The Arbroath group have gone on to work with staff in different projects. Sharing their work with others has given young people in Angus the chance to explore their own feelings and feel they are not alone. The project itself won a National Youth Work award for Arts and Creativity.
The judges stated “This piece of work is a fantastic achievement for all involved which has been recognised nationally by winning a YouthLink Scotland National Youth Work Award 2022 for Arts and Creativity. Large numbers of young people benefitted from taking part in this project and the impact of the work is great. It is an incredibly worthy piece of work and deserving of the recognition given across these Award categories.”
Fantastic to see such success for this group who wanted to share pictures of their work with you which you can see below :)
Runners Up : Polar Academy Group Monifieth
Members : Aiden Cattanach, Rowan Foot, Daniel Millar, Conor Curran, Euan Hanbury, KD Millar, Grace Wilcox, Douglas Baird, Holly Carroll, Rose Black, Finlay Stewart, Morven Crighton, Jamie Gellatly
In 2021 Monifieth High School was selected by The Polar Academy charity as one of its two Angus schools who, with school staff, identifies ‘invisible’ 14-17 aged pupils, all strangers, crushed by lack of self-esteem/various life struggles. Hundreds of pupils signed up, but only 15 made it through various processes to the final selection weekend in Glenmore, June 2022. There they were encouraged and tested mentally/physically/emotionally through multiple activities/presentations along with one parent, to finally select 10 for expedition and 5 for youth exchange to Greenland. The team has since taken part in Vibrant Communities Young Scot media workshops, fundraising, started a rigorous ten-month training programme including weekly ‘Insanity’ workouts, hill/tyre hauling walks, Cold Chamber visit, wild camping etc to prepare for exploring Greenland’s remotest terrain or pupil exchange in March 2023. Before/after their return, each pupil has a role to share their experiences with their peer groups, speaking to more than 20,000 pupils in their region. This MHS team have repeatedly pushed themselves out of their comfort zones but they, and families, are also developing strong relationships. They are becoming living, breathing proof that dreams are attainable and that ordinary pupils can achieve the truly extraordinary.
The judges stated : “The dedication young people and all those involved are showing to this project is immense. Being part of this project is life changing for young people. But it takes hard work, commitment and determination to be involved – which these young people have shown even in the early stages. We look forward to hearing all about your achievements as you continue working together.”