Hi, I’m Anisa and I am currently completing my Gold Arts Award! A section of my award requires me to learn about Arts in the community by finding an opportunity to work with an arts practitioner or an arts establishment on a voluntary basis for a week. My Arts Award mentor advised me to contact Déda as she knew about the exciting events and opportunities they constantly had on offer and she thought that they would be able to support me with my award, so I contacted them and was asked to meet and discuss how Déda would be able to support me. When meeting them, they were extremely accommodating and gave me lots of opportunities to meet the requirements of my award with them.
I’m not very familiar with the Dance sector of the Arts as I am a singer, so I thought that doing my voluntary week at Déda would be a wonderful opportunity for me to learn more about Dance, as learning new things and expanding my knowledge of the Arts is what my Arts Award is all about! Everyone I met was very professional and seemed to have a love and passion for the Arts which allowed me to learn a lot and enjoy my week here.
I got involved with Déda just before their Summer Activity Programme began which was very lucky for me as Déda was very supportive about what I needed from them regarding my award and they suggested that being involved in this would be a beneficial and unique circumstance for me to complete this section of my award. This was a very valuable experience for me as I learned a lot about different aspects of the Arts, such as craft, visual arts and dance sequences of which I wasn’t very familiar with. This very busy week also enabled me to see what goes into putting on two separate productions in a week.
As well as completing the Gold Arts Award, I am currently applying to university and eventually I would love to support disadvantaged children and children with additional needs through the Arts. This opportunity has provided me with additional skills about teaching and presenting ideas to young children which enabled me to complete another section of my award which requires me to teach and lead a project. During this week I learned how to make Marigold Flowers which I decided to teach to a group of children. This has provided me with further teaching experience which will be beneficial for my continued professional development and opens more career prospects for me in the future.
Déda were extremely helpful and supportive with allowing me to fulfil certain requirements for my award, for example for one section I had to view a theatrical performance taking place in the community and they suggested that I view the performance which I helped with at the end of the week. This was one of my favourite moments from my experience here as it was great to see how the two productions came together. It was lovely to see how the children’s confidence had grown and how they had flourished and developed through the week. I felt proud that I was part of the two amazing productions as the children had executed them brilliantly!
I feel lucky that I found Déda as they have been immensely supportive and willing to help me with my award. Due to this, I have been able to complete various parts of my award instead of just the volunteering aspect which is what I initially thought that I would be doing. Meeting new people and doing something completely different is quite hard for me, however Déda made this an incredibly easy transition through helping and supporting me throughout the week and by making me feel confident and part of the team!
I hope to work with them soon as everyone was very lovely and I learned so much from this experience that contributes to my professional development.