A flexible approach to working with young people
Tyne & Wear Museums, a regional museum and art gallery service, used the Art Ambassadors Project as part of its approach to target 16–25 year olds. This case study details the background to Art Ambassadors, the scheme in practice, including meetings with youth workers, and its conclusion to take a flexible approach to meeting young people on their own terms.
We learnt from our contact with youth workers and young people that in order to encourage young people to use the gallery and to participate in visual arts activities, they must be free to choose their own level of engagement. This supports the work of youth services, which aim to develop the individual’s independence and confidence to form opinions, develop skills and make choices about everything from jobs to culture. Drop-in activities were held every weekend between February and April 1999. The activities differed from week to week, and always offered the participant the opportunity to keep what they had made. They were based in the heart of the gallery, not far from the main entrance, and not ‘hidden’ in another room.