Embrace Arts centre awarded £75,000 by BBC Children in Need

University of Leicester arts centre, Embrace Arts, has been awarded a grant of £75,000 over three years by BBC Children in Need. This grant will fund an Inclusive Youth Arts Project and help make a difference to the lives of disadvantaged children and young people right here in Leicester.

This grant has been made possible thanks to the generosity of the public. £31.1 million was raised on Appeal night 2013 and BBC Children in Need have since announced that this total has risen to a record breaking £49.6 million.

BBC Children in Need grant will support Embrace Arts’s inclusive practice, a welcoming place to learn, play, create and discover, open to all. Our Inclusive Youth Arts Project will offer bespoke, quality, regular arts activities for disabled children and their siblings enhancing their access to arts. Delivering 60 weekend sessions over 3 years for small groups of 6 children with disabilities and complex needs, the project aims to increase confidence and self-esteem of disabled children within Leicester and Leicestershire. It will also enrich the social life of participants enabling them to make new friendships and connections outside their school.

With the support of BBC Children in Need, Embrace Arts will continue its commitment of reaching out to disadvantaged young people in Leicester by funding a coordinator who will work in collaboration with the participants to design an exciting programme of regular visual arts and music activities. Led by experienced artists and companies, the project will champion best practice for disabled participants in our accessible venue, linked to our new gallery. Free, multi-sensory and tailored to individual needs of the children, the programme will undertake consultation with families and support services. Seeking to benefit children currently least engaged in the arts, the project aims to differentiate activities encouraging children with a range of needs to take part and enhance their lives.

Marianne Pape, Education and Outreach Officer at Embrace Arts, said: “BBC Children in Need has helped us to reach out to the young people in the most need of support in Leicester to access the arts, express themselves and connect with the cultural life of their city. This grant will go on to change the lives of so many young people and give them the support they need.”

BBC Children in Need funding relies on the energy and commitment of thousands of fundraisers and supporters across the UK who donate their time and money to support the Appeal. Whether its cake sales, wearing pyjamas to school or having a song and dance, every penny of the money raised goes towards supporting projects across the UK.

All grants go to projects working with children and young people living in the UK who may be affected by homelessness, neglect, abuse or poverty, or those who have faced challenges in their lives such as serious illness, disabilities and psychological disorders.

The public is encouraged to support the award-winning work of Embrace Arts by contributing to the Breaking Barriers Appeal, which will ensure ongoing opportunities for even more people by creating a fantastic new galleries wing.