DigiTales collaborated with Zap Art, Sussex Prisoners’ Families and the University of Brighton on the Hidden Voices project, creating digital stories with families of prisoners in Brighton in February 2017.
Hidden Voices was a programme of expressive arts workshops in youth clubs and community centres across East and West Sussex, to raise awareness of the ‘hidden sentence’ faced by one of society’s most invisible groups – prisoners’ families (partners, carers, parents and particularly young people and children). A key aim was to highlight the impact of family imprisonment upon wellbeing, relationships and life chances and offer a platform to promote youth voice.
DigiTales and the University of Brighton led an intensive, 3-day Digital Storytelling workshop and showcased the stories in May as part of the Brighton Fringe Festival.
Zap Art is a creative arts charity, internationally renowned for introducing high quality, powerful arts experiences to new audiences, with a particular focus on engaging people in areas of deprivation, working with disadvantaged or marginalised groups. Zap designs creative programmes and cultural events that involve communities, and through working in partnership with social organisations it seeks to support people to transform their personal situations or tackle social issues.
SPF is a community interest company, established in 2013, which supports local families in Brighton, West Sussex and East Sussex to cope emotionally and practically with the imprisonment of a loved-one. SPF offers support and advice to families (partners, carers, parents, young people and children) as well as training and awareness-raising for professionals so that they can better meet families’ needs. SPF’s first strand of work is supporting defendant families in court, but they are currently developing community based support groups including youth voice activity.
The project was supported by grant funding from People’s Postcode Trust (£20,000) and BBC Children in Need (£10,000).