To celebrate Scotland’s Year of Young People 2018 and this year’s theme of Beginnings, the Scottish Mental Health Arts Festival has developed four exciting new projects with young people, ensuring we have a strong youth voice at this year’s festival. This work is supported by the Year of Young People 2018 Event Fund, managed by EventScotland

SMHAF Youth Panel

The Youth Panel will inform a series of youth focused events at SMHAF 2018 and create a record of the festival through the eyes of a younger audience. Over the past three months, pupils from three secondary schools have been working towards curating multimedia arts events in their schools, featuring an artist connected to the festival and a short film programme selected from this year’s submissions. Participants have taken part in workshops, giving them an insight into arts curation, event management, marketing and digital journalism, as well as power and purpose of the arts in relation to mental health. The participating schools are: Clydebank High School, West Dunbartonshire; Lourdes Secondary School, Glasgow; and Trinity High School, Renfrewshire.

Vox Liminis

KIN is an arts collective of 14-25 year olds who have been affected by the imprisonment of a parent or sibling. Working together, they make sense of their experience through creative means, and make art that speaks of their experience in a way that engages and provokes members of the public to think deeply about what it means to be a just society. Since October, KIN have been working towards CON(SCRIPTED) – a public event in May 2018 as part of the Year of Young People 2018. An interactive performance encompassing poetry, soundscape, installation and sensory overload, KIN have worked closely with musicians, poets, sound and visual artists in prison, residential, school, youth group and professional settings. Vox Liminis also present the live launch of Distant Voices: Not Known at this Address, an album bringing together some of Scotland’s most celebrated songwriters with people who have first-hand experience of the criminal justice system.

Into Film Scotland

Into Film Scotland are working with existing film clubs based in North and Central Scotland to engage in a youth filmmaking initiative as part of SMHAF 2018. Into Film Club members from Aberdeen, Edinburgh and Glasgow will come together to watch and discuss a curated programme of short films that will explore themes of mental health and Beginnings. Young people will then be supported by a professional filmmaker to engage in producing their own content and expressing their voice in response to the theme. The final production will be shared at showcase events within the respective Into Film Clubs to a wider school and local community audience as well as featuring in the Youth Perspective programme at the CCA during SMHAF 2018.

Emma Jayne Park

Cultured Mongrel Artistic Director and SMHAF Associate Artist Emma Jayne Park will work with dancer James Fogerty in Hillhead Library for the entire month of May 2018, collaborating with the three Primary 5 groups from Notre Dame Primary School to create site specific dance performances inspired by books for children and young people that work with the themes of mental health. The young people involved, their families and older pupils from the school will be invited to the library to watch and discuss the performances.