Pan Intercultural Arts is an art organisation working with London’s deprived communities to encourage integration, build confidence, communication and transferable skills for future training and employment
The Synergy Project uses a range of art forms to give deprived young people a voice on society and the cuts. It also provides an opportunity for young people at risk of crime and anti-social behaviour to focus on something positive for their futures, learning technical and transferable skills for employment and training.
For eight years, Pan Intercultural Arts has worked with London’s deprived communities as well as with young refugees and asylum seekers using theatre, song, music, photography, dance, film, creative writing and visual arts to encourage integration, build confidence, communication and transferable skills for future training and employment. Their latest project - the Synergy Integration Project - engages young people who live in the most deprived areas of Camden using urban music, dance, graffiti art, drama and film to explore current issues that affect young people.
The project works in partnership with youth organisations and youth centres in the borough targeting young offenders, care leavers, refugees and asylum seekers and those not in education, employment or training (NEET).
Separate groups are then brought together to work towards an interactive multi-arts event at Camden’s Roundhouse to give young people a voice on issues that affect them.
“Over the past 2 years participants have spoken a lot about the divide between young people and the Police in London. There is a lot of frustration on the street but also so much talent. Synergy offers the opportunity to use that talent to find positive solutions whilst developing skills and aspirations for a better future” says Laura Cowan, the project manager of Synergy.
Fortune is a theatre group for young refugees and asylum-seekers aged 16 – 26. The group provides along with psychotherapists and social workers,
Pan offers group support. Using voice work, improvisation, expression, movement and storytelling exercise, we can equip participants with the tools they need in such challenging situations”, explains John Martin, Artistic Director of Pan Intercultural Arts.
Pan’s council grant for office rental has been cut. As social and youth services get cut, young people need projects like Pan intercultural Arts to provide the personal, social and creative development that is already scarce for deprived young people in the city. Despite the cuts, Pan’s projects are expanding to meet the needs of many deprived young people. Laura Cowan says, “We know it makes a lasting difference to the young people’s lives.”
“I was quite aggressive in my speaking. I was a lot louder… it helped me to, like, listen to other people’s opinions. It’s kinda shown me what other people’s views of my aggressiveness is like…and I’m thinking, wow, is that how I look? Wow, maybe I should just stop.” Aaliyah grant
“When I came first to this country I had no real family, I couldn’t speak English, I couldn’t communicate with people I had no confidence. Since I joined the Fortune group, I shared my ideas, my experience of my life with them. They were happy to help me with all these kind of things. Pan is a family to me, I’m really excited to be with the group and enjoy the moment.” Dieuxmerci Kimpembe
“Pan gives opportunities to people my age that they wouldn’t usually get” Ben Mansilla-Campbell