Hearts for the Arts Awards

Create & Learn PlayKits

Wandsworth London Borough Council


Best Arts Project 2021

Create & Learn PlayKits

What our judges said:

"Direct, impactful creativity delivered straight to the young minds who will have charge of our culture in the future. The view that this was done with an eye on digital poverty is a massive bonus. This kind of project isn’t a one off experience or tied to a certain location. The impact of the work done here goes home with the kids. I am very happy to hear they want to continue the project and work with artists and more schools in 2021."
"It was lovely to read about how many different sectors of community came together to offer such an invaluable service at what was such a difficult time for so many deprived families with young children. The simplicity of the project is brilliant, and enabling so many kids to access the joys of creativity is hugely worthwhile. I grew up in a house where both my parents were artists, so it was normal for me to be surrounded by books and art supplies. But, for so many children, these aren’t a feature in their lives, meaning they’re often unable to develop their skills or experience the joys that creativity brings. Without access to these, I imagine I would have not gone into the arts (same for my brother – who is now a renowned portrait painter!), so it’s crucial that as many children as possible are given the chance to develop their imaginations and artistic talents!"
"This project is such a great example of the whole being more than the sum of the parts. It’s great to see so many smaller local organisations pooling their interests and expertise to create a bigger project that fulfils many different needs. It’s really important to have practical support for creativity for under-served groups, and this community collaboration will hopefully continue to build on this foundation to give this access to everyone."
"It’s so heartening to see local communities band to gather to hold the most vulnerable in our communities. Having all seen the Marcus Rashford campaign that forced the government to u-turn on feeding kids in poverty, and then who they contracted the objective to and the paltry result, it is heartening to see local communities, schools and councils identify these areas and step in to provide not just nourishment for the bodies but, very importantly, soul food. We will not know the full ramifications of the pandemic’s damage especially on kids in the heart of their developmental stage- so this is not only a wonderful, but a very important thing."
"A wonderful example of a community responding to specific need and bringing art and creativity into the homes and lives of the children involved. Particularly important during the lockdown to facilitate access to self expression. A really heartwarming and simple example of what a big impact small targeted local initiative can achieve."
"At a time where art seems to be sadly getting lost in our school system, it has been in danger of getting entirely forgotten during the home schooling months of the lock down. This is an amazing, selfless, show of dedication to hand back the facilities to children in this time of need. We take it for granted that while in school the supplies are there on hand, unfortunately for some there is a lack of materials readily available at home."
"A wonderful project to address the needs of children and their families during lockdown. It’s great also that the play kits attracted local sponsorship, linking with food banks, schools and community groups, and that so many partners gave their time in-kind to make it happen."
"This is a simple idea, beautifully executed. Putting affordable creativity into the hands of children allows them to set their own bar and not worry about clearing other people's. At a time of great tension and sadness, projects like PlayKits remind children that they're here and the marks they make matter."
"A great project formed from a strong collaborative partnership between local organisations and with real reach to children across the borough. The PlayKits have provided creativity and inspiration for children and families throughout a very difficult time and it is fantastic that the programme is likely to continue and to influence the way the team operates in future."
"This is a much-needed project aimed at the children of families that need it the most. Until the pandemic hit no one really knew about the digital poverty that some families faced or the fact that some families lack even the basic supplies for children to be creative. This project really tackles this issue."

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