Youth arts charity CREATE is using the power of dance to connect isolated young people across the world and highlight that the isolation felt by young people due to COVID isn’t just a local problem.

CREATE have teamed up with Right2Dance, choreographer Jemma Stein and the Melbourne based dance company YellowWheel to deliver a new arts commission focussed on the problems facing young people.

The project started as part of CREATE’s Open Mind Summit, a conference held annually to highlight the importance of creativity in improving wellbeing and mental health amongst young people, mixes dance and music with spoken word to explore the role of creativity and culture in helping children and young people overcome feelings of isolation and loneliness.

CREATE understands the struggles young people face when it comes to feeling isolated and lonely, and can see the impact it has on them during these hard hitting times. The difference that having a creative outlet can have and the social aspect of creativity is immeasurable . The levels of creativity displayed by the young people involved on either side of the world has been phenomenal and the project has also given them a chance to socialise and share their feelings on life at the moment with one another, finding shared experience between Melbourne and Renfrewshire.

The project has culminated in the production of a short film, titled ‘10,000 miles’, which will be released on Friday 5th of March at Create Cafe, the charities weekly online social group for young people aged 12 to 21.

Projects like 10,000 miles offer real hope in the young people of Renfrewshire and we look forward to showcasing the film.

Nicola Ferguson, youth worker at CREATE stated ‘There are so many young people whose general wellbeing has been impacted by this current climate leading to them facing feelings of loneliness and isolation. We are delighted to see the work with Jemma and both dance groups having a positive impact on their young people but also showcasing the feelings that a lot of young people will be feeling at these times. I look forward to seeing the end film being showcased’.

At the moment it is more important than ever that we highlight the problems facing so many young people who are feeling alone during lockdown. Through the 10,000 miles project CREATE has been able to help , not only local young people, but also young people in Australia to express their feelings through dance.

‘Young people are struggling in so many ways at the moment and we were delighted to be able to be part of this project for them to express themselves and support others through this campaign. Being able to understand and express their feelings through dance is important for these kids and we hope it will support other young people to talk about the feeling of isolation during this pandemic’.

The premier of this short film will be shown at the Create Cafe on Friday 5th March. This is an open session to anyone aged between 12 and 21 and will be on zoom.

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