Young Carers Art Project
Support from Essex Community Foundation and #iwill funding enabled Young Carers to enthusiastically embrace a social action project which concentrated on recycling and brought out their creative sides.
In the approach to ‘Young Carers Action Day’ on 16 March, Young Carers decided that they wanted to incorporate a recycling project with an art project, using their imagination and creativity to make something from recycled products. This helps reduce waste; something that is vitally important for ‘Protecting Young Carers Futures’, and was the theme for this year’s Action Day.
We asked Young Carers what they missed most during lockdown and they said ‘connecting with others’ but they also said they now 'appreciate the outdoors more and nature’. To include both within this project they all agreed it would be nice to make different gifts to give away (with parents' permissions and for when restrictions lifted) to those who struggle to go outside - such as grandparents, neighbours or gift to a care home. One idea they came up with was a bird feeder (made from a washing-up liquid bottle) and another a bird bath (made from a milk bottle) which would bring the outdoors to them.
Young Carers met up on Zoom to talk about their recycling work and enjoyed doing the project 'together'.
We recorded videos from a local artist, Nicky Gayle, (see below) and sent out art packs for Young Carers to use alongside the videos. Young Carers continue to collect recycled bottles to use even now that the project has officially ended.
The project brought interest and encouragement from a range of people. Logoplaste, an international company in the plastic packaging industry, heard of the project and as a result, has given Young Carers amazing support including a fantastic donation of £3,500. Logoplaste featured the Young Carers' project on their intranet:
Young Carers art project in the UK
Logoplaste was fully onboard with a “repurpose plastic bottles” art project, where the goal was to create bird feeders, bird baths, flower pots, candle light holders.
The project was well planned:
- Action for Family Carers – project coordinator
- A guest artist to show all the potential that comes from packaging
- What can be done
- What materials to use
- How to do it – tutorial movies
- Logoplaste – donation and bottles
Logoplaste’s donation will make a difference for these Young Carers who struggle daily and appreciate any support they get.
We will continue to involve the children in recycling and decorating bottles as soon as the Young Carer Clubs resume. Getting involved with nature is also planned with park meetings, inspiring Young Carers as they sit outside, with nature around them.