Art with Heart are collaborating with three Manchester artists and year 6 pupils in partnership with Manchester City Council as part of the council’s 2022 ‘Year of the Child’ project, celebrating and supporting young people in Manchester. The project, Small Voices, will include a special episode of Art with Heart’s podcast Box Tickers, which launched in 2020 to mark the tenth anniversary of the Equality act – and follows over half a decade running equalities workshops in schools throughout Manchester.

The one-off episode will explore what equality means to young people in Manchester and what adults can do to make things better for the next generation. In preparation, Art with Heart have been running workshops with pupils at, St. Wilfrid’s Church of England Primary School in Newton Heath, Crowcroft Park Primary School in Longsight and Haveley Hey Community School in Wythenshawe, focusing on equality, equity, allyship and identity.

These workshops have been followed by sessions with renowned poets Louise Wallwein MBE, mandla and David Viney, working with the pupils to create poems and provocations for the podcast. The artists will also come together to write a manifesto based on the pupil’s work, which will inform a poster campaign to be displayed throughout the city in February 2023.

The special episode of Box Tickers will be launched on the 9th of December, ahead of International Human Rights Day on the 10th of December. Resource packs containing a link to the episode and manifesto will be distributed to primary schools throughout the region, featuring equalities activities that teachers can run with their own classes.

Sharon Gardner, Manchester City Council says: “Manchester City Council Children’s and Education Directorate were delighted to commission ‘Small Voices’ as part of ‘Our Year’ a celebration of children and young people. Using grant funding from the Community Safety Partnership, we wanted to engage with, listen to and capture the voice of our Manchester children about important issues of equality, equity, allyship and identity. The children have worked hard with the artists to produce some amazing poetry and art which tells us what is important to them. We are committed to listening and responding to their views through our commitment to ensuring that they can lead safe, healthy, happy, successful and independent lives now and as they grow up.”

Photo Credit: Joe Smith

Click here to listen to the Box Tickers podcast episodes on Sportify!