The Starfish Collaborative CIC was formalised in May 2018, bringing together a core partnership of practitioners who have worked within their specialised areas of the arts and health sector for many years.
As a collaborative team we have experience utilising our approaches in a wide variety of learning contexts including:
- Young people at risk of disaffection
- Long-term unemployed adults
- People with poor mental health
- Womens groups
- Adults with learning difficulties
- Young people in primary and secondary education
- Change management and team work for employees and managers
Starfish Collaboratives have previously worked with partners including CSWP Connexions, Creative Partnerships, Coventry City Council, Warwickshire County Council, Warwickshire Probation Service, TESS (The Employment Support Service), Knowsley NHS Primary Care Trust, United Utilities, Groundwork plus many schools and community groups.
Some examples of past Collaborative projects are listed below.
The delivery of several 8 week programmes of participatory arts activities, was branded as ‘Creative Minds’ to signal the applied arts and enterprise aspect of the work. The programme focussed upon developing employability and enterprise aspirations and skills, communication skills and teamwork, problem solving, body language, presentation skills.
We operated within The Voluntary and Community Sector Partnerships provision of the Coventry regional strategy. This was one part of the provision evaluated by the Department for Communities and Local Government. The full report of the national LEGI programme can be accessed here
This programme followed on from the previous commission following the valuation of participant distribution across the target areas of Coventry.
These 6 week programmes targeted the hardest to reach in terms of workless households, and offered participatory arts activities with a focus on confidence building, re-engagement with city wide services, developing self-expression, aspirations and transferable soft skills to allow participants to move forward in the lives in whichever form that was: into employment, improved health, or becoming more active and engaged within their own personal circumstances.
This project was an eight week participatory arts programme focussing on the completion of brief style tasks that introduced participants to a range of different arts activities, and creative challenges.
Participatory sessions were complemented with individual personal development planning activity and career opportunity research, rather than the more traditional ‘job search’ activity.
This was a series of eight session programmes for adults with learning difficulties, focussing on developing their employability aspirations and skills.
Working in partnership with placement providers, these programmes included confidence building, body language, interview techniques, assertiveness and behaviour in the workplace, and positive experiences around problem solving in a team setting. Engagement with a wide range of creative arts and media tasks also offered opportunities to discover self expression and for many participants, this signalled the introduction to new hobbies and leisure activities.
Creative Training for Creative Trainers
CPD activity commissioned by Coventry City Council, offering team development and inter-organisational partnership development opportunities for a wide range of training staff from services across the LEGI regional partnership. The workshops were designed to offer perspectives about and consultation around managing change during a period of restructuring and redeployment of services and provision. Activities focused on communication skills, problem solving, collaboration and personal and collective goal setting.
Time Gentlemen Please! – Men’s Health Campaign Merseyside
Initially commissioned for presentation at a corporate function for GPs and Health Professionals, to highlight the launch of a new Men’s Health drive across the Merseyside Metropolitan borough.
The response to this first sketch-based piece led to the commission of a full length sketch show to tour the pubs and clubs of Knowsley as part of a social marketing project to engage men in health issues.