In 2017, SO Festival worked with artist Emma Wee to run workshops with young people to design activities for the festival family space which they also dressed together. The young people managed the family space during the events. Several young Ambassadors were recruited to undertake pre-festival promotion, assist with artist and audience support and create social media content during the festival.
SO Festival worked with Simon Preston to run Cake Fest (creation of an edible map of East Lindsey and its landmarks). As part of this mass participation project SO Festival hosted six cake making sessions in care homes and the Spilsby Youth Centre. SO Festival also focused on accessibility and achieved Bronze Level Attitude is Everything Charter status, which included additional training for staff and stewards, making the website and communications of the festival more accessible as well as having seating and various print options of the programme available (eg. large print and Braille).
In 2018 SO Festival set up a family programming space around Tower Garden, offering families a safe space in the centre of the festival. They also worked with Desperate Men to run workshops with local communities, culminating in a ‘reverse parade’ – the SOuvenir walk around Skegness. The walk included mini performances by Desperate Men and locations that participants had highlighted in the workshops previously. A video of the walk was created by a young video artist.
In 2018 Appetite did not deliver any Taster Tour events, however they recruited an Ambassador to programme six audience development activities under Museum of the Moon, in the run up to the festival. Two Wavemaker workshops were delivered with local youth apprentices, workshops sessions were held with a local radio station and ambassadors liaised with local businesses to offer cultural coupons for audiences. Building on the success of Karl’s artist videos over the past two years, Appetite worked with digital ambassador Louisa who is autistic and has experienced mental health difficulties to create content for social media. 750 copies of Appetite’s Big Feast family activity book were distributed.
Following on the previous year’s successful dance project, in 2018 Derby Festé delivered a large-scale participation circus and carnival project, to celebrate Circus 250. Derby Feste continued working with outreach partners Artcore as well as three community hubs, one music engagement hub and four schools in low engagement areas to teach participants the choreography for the parade. The choreography was also made available on YouTube and promoted via social media. The activities cumulated in a circus and carnival parade on the Saturday of the Festival.
In 2016 Freedom Festival delivered spoken word workshops to increase engagement with older people, which explored their personal aspirations and views on the changes taking place within their city. The festival developed their Community Correspondent scheme, which provided training in broadcast techniques and created opportunities for audience members to have their say.