As part of National Story Telling Week, we highlighted some of the fantastic work that has come out of the ‘Stories to Connect with’ project, run by Dr Candice Satchwell.
Candice, and her intern Gregory, have written two short blogs on their experiences of the project below, with some lovely reflections on the work of this project.
Candice: Stories to Connect is in the final phase of piecing together the final versions of our stories collected by, with and from disadvantaged young people. The project has been a fascinating journey from our early collaborative workshops, learning how to interview other people, moving out into other groups to carry out the interviews, and then creating fictional stories to reflect our young people’s experiences. We have learned such a lot from one another, about communication, empathy, challenges, and successes.
As we gradually ‘release’ our stories on our website, and through our collection of co-produced phygitals, we hope that other people are also learning from our work together. We have made around 50 stories that can be read by all ages, and for many we have video versions with animation, illustration, and narration. The stories are designed to tell the stories of young people whose voices are seldom heard, and to encourage understanding, compassion, and ultimately social change in the wider community.
Gregory Penlington: I felt that not only would this internship be good work experience and good to have on my CV, but because the project also fascinated me with its stories of young people struggling through disabilities and disadvantaged living, especially as I have Asperger’s Syndrome and partial deafness myself. While I did learn a lot about the young people whose stories I followed as I made them into accessible media, I also surprisingly learnt that I have a knack for video making/editing especially with the praise I was receiving from my first couple of videos from my managers.
I learnt a lot about myself, about the people I worked with both directly and indirectly, and I learnt new skills that could greatly improve my prospects in the future. I feel that the Stories2Connect project definitely gave the young people involved a voice for many around the world to hear, this in turn could help raise support not only for the young people whose stories feature in the videos but also many more who haven’t had a chance to tell their stories yet.
I would like to also add that working with my two managers, Candice Satchwell and Gail Davidge, is an absolute pleasure. They have been very helpful with input on how I can improve videos and what deadlines they need to be completed by. They are also very friendly and easy to talk to such as when we have our meetings to discuss progress on all the videos made for the project.
The impact of these projects is frequently far wider than the initial conception of the project, or even the immediately visible outcomes. It is lovely to reflect on that wider impact and celebrate it. If you want to find out more, and discover some of the videos, stories, and “phygitals”, visit Stories2Connect and explore the rest of this Connected Communities project.
We will be showcasing more blogs from various projects across our theme months this year and hope you look forward to reading about them!