Birmingham-based Sampad South Asian Arts & Heritage have been awarded funding from The Baring Foundation for a vital community project in one of the city’s most deprived areas.
Since 2017 Sampad have been working with Dolphin Women’s Centre (DWC) in Washwood Heath to co-design the community engagement project Create and Change. Attended by local women and families Create and Change uses a variety of art forms from spoken word, photography to craft making, through a programme of workshops designed to increase wellbeing and reduce isolation.
The £39,980 grant over two years will help Sampad to continue their ongoing partnership with DWC an organisation that provides a safe place where women can come together, learn skills, and make new friends.
Sabra Khan, Sampad’s Executive Director said, “Sampad has long believed in using the arts to support wellbeing. At a time when there is a greater need to take care of our physical and mental health, we thank The Baring Foundation for this grant. This funding will enable us to continue to work with our participants and embed long term arts activity through our partnership with DWC in Washwood Heath, an area listed in the 10% most deprived neighbourhoods nationally.”
The Baring Foundation is an independent organisation which protects and advances human rights and promotes inclusion. The Foundation seeks to build positive, purposeful partnerships with grant recipients, grant makers and others to work together for social change.
The Baring Foundation’s Director David Cutler said, “We are delighted to be supporting Sampad's continued work with the Dolphin Women’s Centre. Projects often have to close through lack of funding just as participants are getting the most benefit, so we are especially pleased to be able to offer this support.”
Maxine Mills, Project Manager, Dolphin Women’s Centre added, “Our service users have taken part enthusiastically in Sampad’s programme since 2017. The arts workshops and activity have been designed to connect the local community, primarily of South Asian background, to South Asian arts and culture and to help us to further open up conversations around mental health and wellbeing. These activities may often be the only arts activities that they participate in. We are really excited about this next phase of the project and to having an artist based in our Centre and working with them to design and deliver arts workshops and activities for our Centre users.”
Due to Covid-19 the project was moved online in autumn 2020 via video calls delivering weekly sessions including Bollywood Dance workshops and Embroidery for Wellbeing.
This project will commence in September 2021 and will see an artist resident at the Centre to co design workshops and projects with local communities. The project will also support participants to reintegrate to in person activity when they feel comfortable and safe to do so.