Sydney Story Factory
Nurturing young people’s creativity and well-being through sustained personal attention to their writing.
Programs target marginalised students, and those from Indigenous and non-English speaking backgrounds, but are open to everyone. All classes are free.
Funds raised: $25,350
On 26 June 2014, SSF raised $25,350 at TFN Sydney (including $10,000 in funding matched by Creative Partnerships Australia) to engage a ‘Story Teller in Chief’ and host free after-school writing workshops for participants aged 7 -17.
Within a year, Sydney Story Factory rose in both magnitude and prominence. Recently named as a 2015 finalist in the prestigious Macquarie Social Innovation Award (to be announced 31 August 2015), the organisation now offers a wider range of programs catering to broad social diversity from its headquarters in Redfern - ‘igniting the spark of creativity in every child, one story at a time’.
SSF invites children and young people from diverse backgrounds with limited English language skills to practice creative literacy and build their confidence and engagement with mainstream education. On 26 June 2014, SSF raised $25,350 at TFN Sydney (including $10,000 in funding matched by Creative Partnerships Australia) to engage a ‘Story Teller in Chief’ and host free after-school writing workshops for participants aged 7 -17.
Having budgeted to accommodate six writing workshops, the folks at SSF were very happy to find themselves in receipt of enough funding to add an extra free program. Approximately 140 young people participated in the seven workshops, with each young storyteller receiving eight hours of personal attention to their writing from SSF’s team of volunteer tutors. Topics ranged from “The Real Ghosts of Redfern” and “Adventures in a Box” as the imagination and energy of these budding authors was transformed into self-assurance, learning opportunities and seven illustrated publications: emblems of achievement.
For participants in the workshops, higher levels of literacy beget higher levels of confidence and self-esteem as development in language and enthusiasm helps them progress in the Australian education system. SSF programs are assessed independently by academics from the University of Sydney as part of an ongoing, long-term evaluation – looking specifically at improvements in written and oral communication skills, resilience, self-confidence and self-efficacy, creativity and empathy. An interim assessment report issued in early 2015 gives an account of how SSF writing workshops are delivering confidence, capacity, and proclivity across an expanded repertoire of skills, not to mention the almost unanimous references to ‘enjoyment’ and ‘fun’.
Read their Impact Report