21 Jan 2019

Sherman Theatre’s groundbreaking work to increase access to the arts will continue for another four years thanks to significant additional funding from Paul Hamlyn Foundation. The initial five years of funding from Paul Hamlyn Foundation which made Sherman 5 possible came to an end in Summer 2018. Sherman 5 gave people across Cardiff and South East Wales who faced barriers and/or disadvantage, and who had never attended a performance at the theatre before, the chance to do so. Now, thanks to a More and Better grant from Paul Hamlyn Foundation, building on the solid foundations of the first five years, the Sherman 5 initiative will grow and develop to provide greater depth of engagement for its members, existing and new.

Over the next four years the programme will support diverse communities to access and engage with many more elements of Sherman Theatre’s work. This access will continue to include opportunities to see performances as well as the introduction of training and career opportunities in an effort to enable more people from diverse backgrounds to successfully pursue careers in the arts. The programme will also support and provide opportunities for three specific groups: older audience members, Deaf Theatre Club and blind/partially sighted members and Refugees and Asylum Seekers.

Paul Hamlyn Foundation’s Director, Grants and Programmes, Régis Cochefert said ‘‘Sherman Theatre has worked hard to develop meaningful relationships with community partners, building on their strengths. This inclusive approach to community engagement is embedded across the organisation. Sherman 5’s use of Time Credits has proven instrumental in creating these reciprocal ties, helping individuals to increase agency and overcome exclusion. This grant will support Sherman Theatre to expand this strand of the programme, to develop their model to help those facing particular barriers and to broaden personal development opportunities for volunteers. We look forward to seeing the further impact of their work in Cardiff and South East Wales.”

Sherman Theatre’s Executive Director, Julia Barry said “I am delighted that our relationship with Paul Hamlyn Foundation will continue for a further four years. With their generous support over the past five years, Sherman Theatre has made a significant and lasting difference to the lives of many, many members of our Communities across Cardiff and South East Wales. The work undertaken since 2013 has challenged, informed and inspired us at the Sherman and would not have been possible without the dedication and commitment of the full Sherman team. The award of this additional funding is testament to the impact the initial Sherman 5 programme had in widening access to the arts and to how access for all is fundamental to the ethos of Sherman Theatre. We are excited to work with Paul Hamlyn Foundation, our current members, partners including Tempo Time Credits and collaborators to evolve this programme of work to explore new and varied ways of breaking down barriers and ensuring equality of access for all.”

This new phase of Sherman 5 will be fully launched later in 2019.


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