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Art of the matter
Tuesday, 05 July 2011
By Lindsay Burns
INNOVATIVE art is opening inner-city children’s eyes to environmental issues and the value of their community.
Jade Mitchell, 25, uses art projects to work with young people in Borough and Elephant & Castle.
She highlights the the importance of recycling and reuse through her organisation Creative Landscapes.
Projects it has run have included scrap craft workshops for children, a festival called Art Cycle, foraging for wild foods, composing and photo workshops.
She even organised for a graffiti mural to be created using leftover paint – as it can be harmful to the environment if it is thrown away.
Miss Mitchell was inspired to set up the project after working for reproductive health charity Wellbeing of Women in a deprived Nepalese community.
She has been nominated for an Our Heroes Award as part of this paper’s campaign to recognise the achievements of South Londoners.
Miss Mitchell, who grew up in Elephant & Castle, said: “I was living in a really poor village in Nepal. There’s no electricity there for most of the day.
“I realised that people really didn’t waste anything there, because they couldn’t afford to.
“It really put things into perspective and made me realise how wasteful we are. So I started coming up with different projects to do with art and the environment.”
The 02 Think Big scheme for new projects has supported her scheme with a £2,500 contribution.
Her next project is a Thames foreshore hunt for discarded plastic, which will be made into a massive sculpture by the youngsters involved.
Miss Mitchell said: “They don’t know what it’s going to look like until they have collected all the rubbish on the day.
“We can offer new experiences, outside their scope of familiarity. Some come back and they’re really into it, but others hold back because they think they’re not creative, which is a shame.”
She said she would eventually like to set up a business, running community events and working more young people.
Miss Mitchell said: “The kind of thing we do works really well at community events.
So I can see us getting work through that.”
Our Heroes Awards nominees’ stories will be given to a panel of judges after the closing date so that winners can be chosen.
The campaign culminates in a gala ceremony at the South Bank headquarters of sponsors Shell on November 15.
Copyright Tindle Newspapers Ltd Friday, 24 May 2013
Other Our Heroes Awards 2011:
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