The newsletter for arts organisations working in criminal justice.
In this month's issue...
- National Criminal Justice Arts Alliance News
- Events and training
- Arts and criminal justice news and publications
- Resources and opportunities
Anne Peaker Lecture 2020 – Beyond Survival: Creativity in Confinement with Lemn Sissay
This month, we held the eleventh Anne Peaker lecture, honouring the work and legacy of Anne Peaker, a pioneer of arts for, and by, people in the criminal justice system. Thank you to the 230+ people who joined us to welcome Lemn Sissay, author, poet and broadcaster as our keynote speaker for this year’s lecture. Lemn’s inspirational talk on what creativity has meant to him was both moving and hugely entertaining. Thank you also to Brenda Birungi, aka Lady Unchained, who hosted the event with such warmth and energy. Congratulations also to Jamal Khan, Sam Drinkwater, S_Man, Tek and Noble for their fantastic performances and inspiring activities. For the first time, the lecture will also be broadcast to people in prison across England and Wales later this month with thanks to the Prison Radio Association. Read more and watch Jamal perform his poem here
What would you like to see at our next network hangout?
We’ll be holding our next network hangout in January (date to be confirmed). Network hangouts are a chance to bring people working in the arts in criminal justice sector together, share our experiences, and make new connections. Is there a topic you’d like to see addressed at future network hangouts? Let us know your suggestions - send us an email at email@example.com
Have your say on what Clinks Thinks
Which policy areas have the most impact on the people you support and the delivery of your services? Clinks wants our policy and influencing work to accurately reflect the experiences of voluntary organisations working in criminal justice. Take just 5-10 minutes to share your thoughts on our current policy priorities, and tell us what else you would like to see Clinks advocate for on behalf of the voluntary sector working in criminal justice. This is an important opportunity for the National Criminal Justice Arts Alliance network to make its voice heard. You will help inform our future influencing activity and a new edition of Clinks Thinks which we aim to publish in 2021. The survey is open until 10th December. Read more about this work here, and take the survey here
The National Criminal Justice Arts Alliance wishes you a safe and restful holiday season
This is our last newsletter for 2020 - we’ll still be around on social media, but the NCJAA team will be out of the virtual office over Christmas and the New Year . Looking back on 2020, thank you to everyone who has taken part in NCJAA activities since March, completed Clinks/NCJAA surveys and kept us informed about your experiences during the pandemic. Despite the many challenges the arts in criminal justice sector has faced over this immensely challenging year, our network has shown amazing resilience and adaptability. We wish you all a safe and restful break over the holidays, and look forward to seeing you (perhaps in person!) in 2021.
Want to include something in the next newsletter?
We will be sending our next newsletter on Thursday 28th January. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org with any news, research, events, opportunities or blog proposals by Tuesday 19th January.
Criminal Justice Alliance Awards Ceremony
26th November | online | free
The Criminal Justice Alliance (CJA) Awards celebrate outstanding individuals and organisations who have made a significant contribution towards creating a fair and effective criminal justice system. The CJA Media Awards also celebrate journalism, digital media and documentaries that have contributed to a better understanding of criminal justice in society. Find out who has won this year’s awards and celebrate the achievements of everyone on the shortlist at tonight’s ceremony, which will be presented by Junior Smart, founder of the St Giles Trust SOS Project, and will feature a performance from spoken word artist Brenda Birungi, aka Lady Unchained, who hosted our Anne Peaker lecture earlier this month. Register here
The Empowered Musician: free conference for music professionals
2nd-3rd December | online | free
The Empowered Musician is the Incorporated Society of Musicians’ annual conference. This year, the two-day conference will be moved online and will bring together innovative artists and leading music industry experts to share their experiences and offer practical advice for success. Topics include staying resilient, Covid-19’s impact on inequality, and tools for freelancers. With speakers including David Lammy MP, the conference will examine the key issues for the music industry beyond 2020, offer support and inspiration, and argue for the viability and value of a career in music. Find out more and book here
Writer Frank Cottrell-Boyce in conversation with PACT
3rd December | online | free
Join the Prison Advice and Care Trust (PACT) for the annual Sir Harold Hood Memorial Lecture with novelist and screenwriter Frank Cottrell-Boyce, author of award-winning children’s book Millions. Entitled ‘Some Things We Can’t Think’, the lecture asks what happens when we don’t get to tell our own stories, or don’t recognise ourselves in the stories that are told about us. The Lecture will also include the premiere screening of PACT’s new documentary, ‘Hidden Sentences: Voices of Prisoners’ Families’. Following the film and lecture, there will be a Q&A session with Frank and some of the people with lived experience of the justice system who feature in the film. Book your place here
Working with trauma training for prison and community sectors
3rd December | online | £114-£190 (discount available)
Becoming Trauma Informed is an online course designed to support staff in organisations to develop an understanding of the dynamics and process of trauma to inform practice and system change. Run by One Small Thing, a charity promoting trauma-informed approaches throughout the criminal justice system, the course’s approach is based in understanding the trauma of the individual through a lens of empathy. A 40% discount is available for organisations with an income under £350,000. One Small Thing has also launched a Working with Trauma Quality Mark aiming to provide a framework for organisations to benchmark their practice, support organisational learning and gain recognition. Find out more here
Stories from inside New York State prisons during Covid-19
9th December | online | free
‘Lulu, I Hear You’ is a 30-character performance piece based on poetry and stories collected by US charity Rehabilitation Through the Arts (RTA) from people inside New York State prisons during the Covid-19 pandemic. With a cast of RTA alumni and teaching artists, the piece shares the voices of people in prison and their experiences of lockdown. Join RTA at the virtual premiere, which will be followed by a discussion with RTA alumni who have been released over the past few months who can speak directly to the experience of being locked down, locked in and released during a pandemic. Find out more and book here
Koestler Awards winners announced
This year Koestler Arts asked entrants to its annual Koestler Awards, the leading national awards for arts in criminal justice, to respond to the prompt of ‘window’. Despite the ongoing challenges faced by people in the criminal justice system and beyond, Koestler Arts received over 6,500 submissions. Some of the artwork entered into this year’s awards is featured in Koestler’s No Lockdown in the Imagination exhibition and can be seen online and outside London’s Southbank Centre. View the winners and find out more here
Open Clasp’s new show available now on BBC iPlayer
Presented by theatre company Open Clasp, ‘Sugar’ is a piece of theatre devised with women who are homeless, on probation or in prison. Dealing with themes of domestic abuse, childhood sexual abuse and childhood trauma, the show’s launch marked the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women and aims to support the UN campaign against gender violence. To create ‘Sugar’, Open Clasp worked with the Women’s Direct Access Centre in Manchester, West End Women and Girls’ Centre in Newcastle, HMP Low Newton and national charity Changing Lives. Stream it on BBC iPlayer here
Stories of making music in prisons
‘Changing The Record’ is a two part podcast series to celebrate 25 years of music in prisons charity Irene Taylor Trust (ITT). Supported by Arts Council England, the series follows the journeys of ITT participants both inside and out of prison. Episode one talks to Patricia, who wrote a lullaby from prison to connect her with her daughter on the outside, as well as ITT’s Artistic Director Sara Lee on how the programmes work and why they never fail to make her cry. The shows will also be aired on National Prison Radio. You can find the show on various podcast platforms - listen on Apple Podcasts here
Holloway Women’s Prison on BBC Woman’s Hour
Five years on from the announcement that Holloway Women’s Prison would close, BBC Woman’s Hour talks to the people who form part of its history, and who are making plans for its future. Once the largest women’s prison in Western Europe, Holloway was famous for once holding some of the most prominent suffragettes who fought for women to have the vote. On the show, the last woman out of Holloway returns to the site to tell her story, and community group Community Plan for Holloway presents their vision for a women’s centre on the redeveloped site. Listen to the episode on BBC Sounds here
Best practice for arts interventions in prisons
Dr Niamh Malone at Liverpool Hope University has published a new manual that provides practical guidance and inspiration for those already working in, or aspiring to set up projects in the arts in criminal justice sector. Based on findings facilitated by Liverpool Hope Theatre Company at HMP Liverpool, it forms part of the ‘Forgotten Futures and the City’ project. The manual covers topics such as what makes a good facilitator and how to structure a workshop and suggests a wide range of activities across different art forms that could be well suited to criminal justice settings. Read the full manual here
Creative action for social change in women’s centres
The 2019/20 Creating Change impact study investigates the programme of the same name designed and delivered by BearFace Theatre in women’s centres across Hampshire. Commissioned by Hampshire Cultural Trust and independently evaluated by Alexandra Russell, this interdisciplinary piece of research uses mixed methods informed by the relational qualities of applied theatre, applied criminology, psychology and sociology, and was shaped by the voices of all participants. Testimonies cite the programme’s bottom-up and co-produced methods, as well as collective play, creativity and the active nature of the programme, as key factors in the positive impact the programme has on pro-social and strength-based shifts in attitudes, thinking and behaviour. Read the full study here
Reading Ahead programme goes digital for 2021
In response to the challenges of the pandemic, The Reading Agency has relaunched the Reading Ahead programme for 2021 with a stronger digital focus. The programme, which supports young people and adults in various settings including prisons to build their confidence and enjoyment in reading, invites participants to record their reading journey in a reading diary. Building on feedback from colleges, workplaces, prisons and libraries, the 2021 packs will feature a new design, fresh materials and a new website and digital delivery model providing the opportunity to take part in the challenge online for the first time. This year organisations can choose to take part with a digital pack, a printed pack or a combination of the two. The packs launch on 1st February 2021 and preorders are now open. Find out more here
Thriving Communities Fund to support creative social prescribing activities
Apply by 8th January
Launched by the National Academy for Social Prescribing, the Thriving Communities Fund aims to support place-based partnerships that will improve the range and reach of social prescribing community activities – especially for those people most impacted by Covid-19. The fund will support community activities developed by partners working in arts and culture as well as other areas within the wider voluntary, community, faith and social enterprise sector. Grants of between £25,000-£50,000 are available to fund projects that will run for a year, including planning and delivery time, from 15th March 2021 to 31st March 2022. Find out more and apply here
Funding for local organisations to improve the outcomes of prison leavers
The Ministry of Justice is launching a Local Leadership and Integration (Grant) Fund worth £7.1m, available to local public and voluntary sector organisations. The grant has been designed to empower, fund and support local leaders and agencies to propose innovative new ways of working together towards shared outcomes that improve the lives of prison leavers. There will be two rounds of funding, the first beginning in January 2021. The maximum bid being awarded is set at £1 million. If you are interested in finding out more, sign up to a webinar session for further details of the fund here
£1.4m added to London Community Response Fund
Apply by 3rd December
The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has announced a further £1.4m contribution to the £4m London Community Response to help community and voluntary organisations who have been badly affected by the impact of Covid-19. Arts and culture community organisations are encouraged to apply for grants of up to £10,000, which are intended to help groups support Londoners affected by Covid-19 over the winter months. Applications will be assessed on a first come first served basis, with a final deadline on Thursday 3rd December. Find out more and apply here
Opportunities for early career artists from low socio-economic backgrounds
Over 2020-2022, the Weston Jerwood Creative Bursaries programme will support 50 salaried jobs in arts and cultural organisations across the UK for individuals from low socio-economic backgrounds. Fair access to working in the arts and cultural sector remains an urgent issue, with those from low socio-economic backgrounds still significantly under-represented amongst the artists and employees of UK theatres, festivals, galleries and arts organisations of all kinds. This programme is intended to support outstanding early-career artists, curators, producers and creatives to thrive, and to work with leading arts and cultural organisations to take an inclusive, intersectional approach to recruitment, artist development and organisational change. Opportunities are now open for application on a rolling basis and new ones will be regularly added. Find out more here
Collaborative theatre opportunity for people with lived experience of CJS
Building on her experience of bringing Shakespeare into prisons, Shakespeare UnBard founder Rowan Mackenzie is now starting a South Yorkshire-based theatre company for those being released from prison or at risk of offending. Supported by South Yorkshire Violence Reduction Unit, ‘Beyond the Walls’ will be collectively owned by all participants and led by collaborative decision making. For participants, the project offers the opportunity to develop transferable skills, become part of a supportive community, and find a unique voice. To find out more contact Rowan at email@example.com
Poets with experience of the criminal justice system could win mentoring
Criminal justice arts organisation Drum and Brass is looking for aspiring poets with experience of the criminal justice system to enter a monthly poetry competition. Judged by artists with direct experience of the justice system, the competition is aimed at anyone with experience of incarceration who would value support to progress their work. Winners will receive support for their work in the form of mentoring with an established performer/writer, as well as entry into a national poetry competition and inclusion in the overall annual Drum and Brass ‘No Bars’ competition. Works can be any length and in any format. Find out more here
Covid-19 resources round-up from Culture, Health and Wellbeing Alliance
The Culture, Health and Wellbeing Alliance has collected a comprehensive selection of resources that could help organisations deal with Covid-19 related issues, from funding and training to practical guidelines for arts organisations. Also included is guidance for freelancers, as well as both analogue and digital resources for creative activities. The page is regularly updated with new links. Find out more here
Free structured peer networking for cultural sector leaders
The UK government’s Peer Network Scheme is a national peer-to-peer networking programme for small and medium enterprise leaders that want to grow and develop their organisation. Delivered through a series of small group sessions led by a trained facilitator, this free programme aims to support participants to overcome business challenges, act on new opportunities, and build a trusted network of connections. The Hatch Ideas cohort has been developed to specifically focus on the creative and cultural industries, including galleries, theatre companies, TV production, arts centres, fashion designers and more. The programme is available to any business that has a turnover of at least £100,000, has operated for at least one year, and has between 5-249 employees. Find out more here
Bookings Coordinator, OddArts
Trustees, Imagine If Theatre
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Clinks manages the National Criminal Justice Arts Alliance (NCJAA) and is the legally accountable body for all official NCJAA activity.
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