Throughout 2020 and 2021 the Covid 19 pandemic made it virtually impossible for us to access prisons to deliver work. We know that many prisons were ‘locked down’ and many people in prison had very little opportunity to spend time out of their cells.
During this period we made efforts to keep connected with the men and women inside a number of our key partner prisons. We wrote to people serving sentences in HMP’s Drake Hall, Garth, Oakwood and Whatton, providing them with stimulus material and inviting their creative responses. We received personal testimony, poetry, visual art, monologues and scenes which we curated into a film: Reach-In: Creativity in Criminal Justice.
In December 2021 we hosted an online event showcasing the film followed by a panel discussion interrogating the value of arts in prisons. The panel was a mixture of criminal justice professionals, artists and people with lived experience. The event was attended by over 100 people.
“Really appreciated the work and found it very impactful.”– Audience Member
“Thank you so much for a brilliantly worthwhile and moving afternoon.”– Audience Member
“A most thought provoking afternoon, thank you very much.”– Audience Member
“Thank you for this and all the opportunities you offer. I value them enormously.”– Audience Member