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Ageing Creatively

Ageing1.jpgWe are busy planning an exciting afternoon for the Suffolk Health and Wellbeing Board Ageing Well in Suffolk conference on 9th October. Whilst the focus of the HWB conference is on how communities can develop to support people living more independently for longer into their older years a sister concert from Suffolk Age UK looks at the part that creativity can play in helping the individual to age well.

Ageing Creatively on 8th October, hosted in Ipswich by broadcaster and journalist Martin Bell OBE is presented in partnership with Dance East. Please see the linked programme which looks absolutely fabulous.

Living and Ageing Well is one of Ci’s core themes so we shall definitely be there. Don’t miss the presentation by our friends at Suffolk Artlink on their fabulous Been There, Done That, Still Moving project. Another highlight among many is Vamos Theatre and in the evening at Dance East a performance by Ladder to the Moon, an interactive theatre company founded by our Associate Justine de Mierre.

There is a discount for booking your tickets before 17th September and don’t forget to ask about the joint offer with the Ageing Well in Suffolk conference.

You can download the programme for Ageing Creatively  here

New Shout Out website

Key-points

Our friends at Shout Out Suffolk have launched their new website at www.shoutoutsuffolk.org

Shout Out Suffolk is an innovative campaign led by Suffolk Fellows of the Royal Society of Arts (RSA) to help young people achieve the future they hope for. The project was inspired by the relatively low levels of achievement by young people attending Suffolk schools and is designed to contribute to the aims of the Suffolk-wide Raising the Bar initiative.

Shout Out Suffolk enabled more than 500 young people to contribute to the Raising the Bar inquiry and is now developing a number of projects to respond to the Inquiry findings. Cultural Intelligence is contributing time and resources to support this process.

If you are interested, the new site is well worth a look and you can sign up there to receive future newsletters.

Community Engagement Good for Business

lepconfThe New Anglia Local Economic Partnership conference at the Green Britain Centre in Swaffham yesterday heard that community engagement is good for business.

The growth conference was hearing from the East Anglian Daily Times Young Business Woman of the Year 2012 Dayle Bayliss who set up a construction consultancy in 2011. Dayle was inspired by her experience of working in a school in Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk where she had the all too rare opportunity to spend a week engaging with the pupils, discovering their perspective and demystifying the building design and construction work she was managing in the school.

Her experience was reminiscent of an engagement project for Bury St Edmunds library led by Cultural Intelligence in 2010 where young people gave their input to the design of the library to make it more welcoming to them.

There is an increasing recognition of the value of involving those who will use a building in the process of shaping its function and design. Cultural intelligence specialises in using creative activities to help people who use a service to influence its development. In our experience, time spent placing service users in the position of client and helping them to draw on their own creativity and work on a level with experts to inform the design of a facility or service will produce a better outcome and save money because we’ll get it more right first time.

Lowestoft Rising

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Cultural Intelligence has worked in Lowestoft off-and-on for more than 17 years. In that time we have seen numerous attempts to produce the social and economic regeneration that the town so desperately needs. What has been missing is a concerted, joined-up, holistic solution. At last there is hope.

We were delighted to be invited to a workshop to help generate new thinking across the whole of the public and third sector in Lowestoft. In Lowestoft Rising there is good cause to hope for a ground-breaking demolition of the historic silo thinking which has been one of the barriers to success in the past. Of equal importance is an understanding that it will take time to achieve the significant change that is needed.

One thing we hope to see much more of is real engagement with the people most effected by the issues. The people of Lowestoft.  Involving local people creatively in designing the solution is the only way to produce the social regeneration that will need to accompany changes in service delivery.

The power of creative engagement to help reshape identity of place has been a major theme of our Associate, Steve Harris’s work in Barrow with ArtGene where many similar challenges are being addressed. It would be just great to be able to bring that experience to Lowestoft.

It is early days, some things will work and others will need to be revised but the apparent openness to fresh thinking is a promising sign. The initiative will need to generate a huge level of energy and interest and this is something that Cultural Intelligence can offer through our deliberative events and creative engagement campaigns.