Twin Vision, an award winning multimedia charity in Merseyside, were awarded funding from Comic Relief to work with bereaved children and young people on a project titled “Remember with Pride”.
The Project saw 32 children and young people aged 7-19 years from mainstream and special educational schools celebrate a positive memory of a loved one they have lost through the accessible medium of stop frame animation. Young people who’ve been affected by bereavement used accessible production equipment and through a supportive working process created an animation based on positive memories of the people they have lost.
The children and young people shared a range of positive memories that they had of their loved one and then developed a storyboard of one of these memories to make into an animation. This aided communication about their feelings of loss of their loved one. With support from Twin Vision arts co-ordinators they worked alongside their peers to create models of themselves and their loved one and a range of props and sets. The team worked closely with child psychotherapists, learning mentors, teachers & leading paediatric specialists who highlighted the need for projects that deal specifically with children who’ve been affected by bereavement.
The project was a success, helping to improve the children’s mental health as they were more confident to share their stories. Staff, family members and the young people themselves reported how much happier and communicative they were. Feedback from parent’s was hugely positive with parents noticing a significant change in their child’s behaviour & willingness to discuss their bereavement.
To showcase their work, the children invited their friends and family to a ‘forget me not’ party. This resulted in a viewing of all the work created and an opportunity to reward the young people with certificates and a DVD of their work.
Furthermore, the children were able to develop ICT skills and gained visual literacy through use of digital SLR photographic cameras, helping to provide the children involved with long term skills which will be beneficial in future for education and work.
The project presented an opportunity to acknowledge the feelings of the children & young people within their family unit and local community and for people who have suffered loss to meet one another and share their experiences and memories. It has allowed the young people to have a greater voice through their journey of bereavement but also it has also given the project a local, regional and national platform to help celebrate the children’s courageous work.