Make the Sunshine is about building connected communities, creating social change through creativity and fostering relationships across generations, schools and communities that enable communities to shine. We work with schools, care homes and communities across Mendip to make life more magical! We use performing arts and creativity to improve wellbeing, boost confidence, encourage imagination and open up possibilities. The core focus of our work is in Shepton although we work across the whole of Mendip. You can find our about the different strands of our work below.
Our core programmes include
An innovative arts programme for over 55s - aimed at improving health and wellbeing and decreasing social isolation - these monthly sessions bring high quality acts into communities and bring people together to celebrate the seasons
Bringing high calibre theatre experiences into schools and community, opening imagination, building confidence and making theatre accessible to families. From The Wardrobe Ensemble to Brook Tate, from PaddleBoat Theatre Company to Sqaushbox, to Theatre Alibi - we work with the finest south-west companies
We work with a partnership of six local schools passionate about the arts to create an annual large-scale production created entirely by young people! On average we work with around 600 -1000 children and create the final piece with 100 - 250. Throughout the process children get to work with a huge range of professional artists - dancers, actors, set designers. shadow puppet specialists and puppet makers.
All the World's Our Playground
An annual performing arts festival programmed by young people. Training young people in programming, marketing and allowing their creativity and imagination to take over the town
We are a registered Arts Award Centre and are currently offering Discover and Explore level qualifications with young people. We run an Arts Ambassadors programme working with six Shepton schools to offer accredited qualifications to young people in the arts and an opportunity to understand more about all areas of creative practice.
Connecting schools and care homes through creative exchanges, memory boxes led by professional artists. As part of this we also work with local schools and partners to help facilitate a wide range of intergenerational events
We also work on a wide range of community projects and commissions - from working with professional artists to create a Happiness Trail with young people to creating huge collective collages for care homes - at the centre of all these events is allowing the creators to lead and develop the process.
The bringing together of so many schools, the community groups and to project such a strong message touched my heart and made me cry. Thank you for making our lovely town such a wonderful place to live and for bringing together the generations and making us all think about what is important.”
Chrissi Kennedy, Director of Shepton Mallet Snowdrop Festival