Artists are being funded for two-and-a-half years to continue bringing free creative sessions for children to the heart of Huddersfield.
MakerWorld, run by The Children’s Art School, has to date been run with small grants and funding boosts from commissions, but now says the future of its MakerWorld sessions is bright, with a substantial sum awarded from the National Lottery Community Fund.
The grant of £228,524 will ensure sessions can be held regularly in the MakerWorld unit, at the Piazza in the centre of Huddersfield, until Easter 2026. The fund distributes money raised by National Lottery players for good causes and is the largest community funder in the UK.
Chloe Williams, director and founder of The Children’s Art School, which was established in 2015, said: “We are delighted that our work has been recognised in this way. It is truly fantastic news for us and a positive way to encourage hands-on creativity which can sometimes, be forgotten about.
“We can continue to bring a first class offering for children, young people and their families at MakerWorld.
“We have worked with hundreds of children and families from across the town’s diverse communities, engaging them in high quality arts experiences; arts festivals and community events.
“Through play, imagining and making we will support more than 2,000 children and their families to develop confidence in their own creativity and improve overall well-being.
“We aim to normalise engagement with participatory arts in Huddersfield town-centre, supporting the transition from the traditional high street to the ‘Cultural heart’ and to put young peoples creativity at it’s centre?
She said the team of highly experienced artists and facilitators had a focus on play and hands-on creativity supporting child development through child centred and inclusive practice, which develops creative thinking skills and imagination.
“Children and parents learn that individual creativity is to be celebrated and are also encouraged to find joy in making; collaborating and sharing experiences. Participants tell us that this positively impacts on the well-being of the whole family,” added Chloe.
Sessions, lead by artist Isobel Denton, will continue to be held each Saturday with additional creative fun for youngsters aged 2-5 years on Fridays during term-time. There will be extra family sessions during the school holidays too.
Sessions are held each Saturday 10am-3pm plus Little Makers for children 2-5 years term-time each Friday 10am-12noon at MakerWorld, Piazza Shopping Centre, Unit 33/34, Huddersfield, HD1 2RS.