February 10, 2015 by News

Young People Celebrate Their Achievements at Walkden Film Preview This Week

A group of young people came together in Walkden, Salford, this week to watch a preview screening of a mini-documentary about their recent dance project, and a film which captured their ‘flashmob’ performance in the Walkden Tesco store.

Over the course of the project, volunteer choreographer John Hoey taught participants a dance routine. Volunteer film-maker Josh Lloyd taught camerawork to some of the group, while Programme Manager Beth taught animation technique to others. Josh brought together all of the footage taken to produce these fantastic films:
Mini Documentary:
‘Flashmob’ Dance:

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It’s a story that starts in Autumn 2014, when we worked with a group of young people to design, record and edit a radio show all about the Little Hulton/Walkden area. We found that a lot of young people feel stereotyped as ‘causing trouble’ – when really there’s just nothing for them to do locally, especially in the places that they enjoy hanging out in in the town centre. Listen to their radio show here:

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The young people came up with some absolutely amazing ideas of how to generate more youth provision in the area, by running activities and workshops in some of the many empty retail spaces in the local Ellesmere shopping centre.

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One of the young people, John Hoey, told us that he aspires to be a dance company director in the future. So we matched him with the wonderful dance tutor Danny Price, who mentored him to gain confidence choreographing and teaching his routine. The message of the dance was all about positive potential of young people in the town.

Their creative leadership efforts have drawn support from many local businesses, residents and other community stakeholders. The final performance within Walkden’s Tesco Superstore in the Ellesmere centre attracted the attention of local politicians, with MP Barbara Keeley tweeting her support and Councillor Richard Critchley attending the event. Manchester Evening News even came along to capture all of the action and achievements of the young people.

John is now volunteering with a local dance crew, developing his confidence and teaching skills further. As part of our pilot leadership programme, he is also currently designing, planning and fundraising for his own project, with our support. He will be using his dance skills to run workshops with young people around the theme of ‘stereotypes’ and working towards a multi-media performance in a Manchester Theatre this year.

A very warm thank you to Tesco Walkden, Karen Acton, her Worsley street dance crew, and to all the young people involved! Also thanks to our funders The Big Lottery.

Volunteer choreographer and dance tutor, John Hoey, said: “The Rio Ferdinand Foundation are helping young people like me to achieve their dreams. They have supported and mentored me to choreograph and teach dance to others, working towards a performance. I’ve gained a lot of confidence and new skills. I’m now starting to run my own dance project as part of their leadership programme, where I fundraise and organise everything myself.”

Volunteer film-maker, Joshua Lloyd, said: “I’ve really enjoyed working on this project with the Rio Ferdinand Foundation. It’s been a great experience, and I’m glad to have been able to help the young people to communicate creatively through film.”

Salford Programme Manager, Beth Powell, said: “It’s been great to see the young people in Little Hulton coming up with solutions to social issues and trying to contribute positively to their local community. We’ve worked with the young people to inspire youth leadership, to help them express themselves creatively, and develop other useful skills along the way. We hope their message is listened to. We have been so impressed by all the contributors to this inspirational project. We look forward to supporting even more creative and active youth-led projects in the area.”