Young people complete culture and heritage project
A group of young people with disabilities have completed a year long culture and heritage programme.
The Peace IV funded programme ‘People Always Ask Us’ was delivered by the Liberty Consortium at The Playtrail.
The project immersed the young people in their culture and heritage through cultural visits and educational residential trips to Belfast and Dublin.
The participants also engaged with groups from different community backgrounds, experienced first hand the food eaten by other communities and took part in a range of cultural activities.
Gavin Melly, Social Inclusion Manager at the Playtrail said the project ‘involved interactions with a variety of groups focusing on diversity, whilst also exploring our local community and the local relationship between Catholics and Protestants’.
He said that the project brought ‘an increased sense of belonging and involvement in civic life for our participants with a disability, whilst gaining an understanding of others in their local community, regionally and nationally.
“During this project our participants developed a deeper understanding of others, increased tolerance and respect for others and embracing cultural diversity.”
The ‘People Always Ask Us’ project focused on four educational areas, including exploring local culture and heritage, regional culture and heritage and understanding diversity within the Derry City and Strabane District Council area and Donegal.
The participants also explored national culture and history.
The young people had access to bespoke sessions involving pottery, music, fashion and food to help them learn about culture and heritage. They also made educational visits to The Siege Museum, Museum of Free Derry, Crumlin Road Gaol, Kilmainham Goal and a tour of the Falls and Shankill areas of Belfast.
These trips were a highlight for the young people, as well as the opportunity to learn new things about their own city and to try new and exciting food from different cultures.
As part of the project, the participants created their own individual scrapbooks, which included a written summary of everything they learned and photos of their experiences.
At a recent socially distanced presentation event, Gavin, who was the programme facilitator of the ‘People Always Ask Us’ project, presented participants with a 32 page photo book and a hoodie for completing the project.
“This photo book was produced to create a lasting memory and legacy of the project for our members,” Gavin said.
“We were delighted to secure this Peace IV funded programme, providing our young people with the opportunity to explore their own culture and heritage, as well as that of others, to break down barriers,” he added.
“In addition we was also able to provide educational residentials to Belfast and Dublin as part of this project, and for many of our young people this was their first time visiting Dublin and sharing a hotel with their friends. This project was a great learning experience for all involved”.