Tuesday 13 January 2015

Shadow Minister to Launch Equalities Films

Steve McCabe MP, Shadow Minister for Children and Families will present the first screenings of two films championing equalities on Friday 16th January at the  Midlands Art Centre in Cannon Hill Park Birmingham.

Birmingham based organisations Parks for Play and Dens of Equality, are co hosting this event. where the Making the Case for Equal Access to Work’ and ‘Inclusive Play in Birmingham’ films will be shown. The occasion marks the launch of two campaigns; one to create equal access to employment across Europe and one to create equal access to play in England.

Parks for Play, a ten year old charity providing affordable, inclusive leisure, play and childcare services to local children in Hall Green is leading on the call for a Europe wide charter. This aims to stop families with disabled children being denied access to work because of a lack of childcare. Parks for Play caters for all children but gives local children with higher individual needs priority access to their services. The charity runs the first specialist afterschool childcare provision in England

Steve McCabe MP said “The significant numbers of children with disabilities in Birmingham means that access to employment for parents with a disabled child is a real issue. This situation will only get worse unless we act now to improve provision for this group. The recent All Party Parliamentary Report from the Every Disabled Child Matters enquiry into childcare for disabled children highlighted the fact that 41% of families with a disabled child are unable to access the existing free 15 hours of provision for 3 and 4 year olds because of poor provision and 86% of parents were paying way above the average for child care because of their child’s condition.’

Parks for Play chair, Amanda Bradley,  working mother of three children , one of whom has Down’s Syndrome, humorously  describes her boomerang  journey to find funding for the charity’s specialist childcare service ‘commissioning officers repeatedly pushed my requests back towards one depleted funding pot for disabled children.  Our search for childcare is an employment issue being raised by families that are rejecting benefit dependency and requesting the right to contribute.  I also want to protect play services that allow all my children to attend together and benefit equally from customized play  provision that embraces diversity and stretches their experience’.

In England play is not a statutory duty and funding for play services has been decimated across the country. In response, Dens of Equality is launching a campaign in recognition of the value of PLAY to produce a motion that will make play a charitable object to attract funding in its own right. The organization has  supported twenty  family-led groups to raise four million pounds to put  disabled children and young people at the centre of  new inclusive play and youth services. Steve McCabe MP has said “We are all conscious of the loss of provision resulting from the austerity of the last five years.  Play is important in building resilience in children and connecting communities.”

Laura Watts of Dens of Equality believes that ‘community play is the most valuable and cost effective resource we have available to grow resilient children, families and communities. If funding is forthcoming and fairly distributed so that play  provision reaches out to get it right  for those children most at risk of social exclusion, absolutely everyone will reap the benefits.’

To book your space email info@parks4play.org  or call 0121 441 2207

Wednesday 26 November 2014

Song of Highbury light the parade

Tiger Skins of Sunlight, a collection of movers, shakers and magic makers present 'The Song of The Woods'.  With a community willow lantern parade and singing from Ark Tindal Primary Academy and King's Heath Primary school choir, we are holding a beautiful winter celebration in local parks Cannon Hill and Highbury, with a live open air film screening of a shadow puppet story featuring the song 'The Woods' by The Phlox of Pink.

Join us for the last performance Thursday 27th November at 6pm (prompt) -7pm in Highbury Park, King's Heath (meeting by the High Street entrance).

Our finale evening event will be held at The Old Printworks 06/12/14 with a final screening of our film and live performance by The Phlox of Pinkstarting at 9pm (18+ £3) A full moon, stunning celebration showcasing the work of the community and all of the artists involved!!!

Useful info:


Sunday 26 October 2014

Commemorating World War 1

Big Brum Theatre in Education are organising a special event on the evening of 11th November 2014, to mark the centenary of the First World War. The event takes place in the historic setting of Highbury Hall, Moseley, from 6.30 to 9.00 pm. Highbury Hall, historic home of the Chamberlain family,was established as a 140 bed temporary hospital by the Voluntary Aid Detachment (VAD) in 1915.

Big Brum will talk about their 5 year World War One project and there will be a performance of 'Home Front - Front Line', Big Brum's first WW1 play that follows a young man who leaves his home & family to serve in the trenches of the Western Front. This is the first in a series of commemorative plays about the First World War and its legacy.  Big Brum will also demonstrate some of their workshop practice that is used to engage young people in deep questions about the conflict and its consequences.

There will also be a contribution from Nikki Thorpe, Education & Outreach Officer from Birmingham Archives & Heritage.  We very much hope that you will be able to join us.

If you are interested in attending please contact Matt Hinks: TIE@bigbrum.plus.com or call 0121 464 4604

Sunday 19 October 2014

Autumn Play at Half term

Looking forward to welcoming your children over the half term holiday. Please can you  confirm your booking ASAP by email or by phone.  There will also be a family twilight Halloween event in Albert Road Play Park on Friday 31st- between 2.30 and 5.30 more info to follow

Thursday 16 October 2014

Song of the woods

This November and December, Balsall Heath, King’s Heath, Moseley, enchanting local green and woodland areas, come join us to sing The Song of The Woods; our celebration of nature, trees and the planet!

A collection of artists; film-makers, animators, musicians, technicians, engineers, willow weavers, foragers, fruit-pickers, concocters, hoopers, dancers, fire-starters, instigators, dreamers and believers come together with the local community to create 3 nights of beauty, magic, stories and song.

A great family activity and opportunity to get involved in The Song of The Woods project. Free Workshops Lantern Making in Kings Heath Library, Saturday 1st November 10-4pm

All of this will be followed by a stunning finale and live performance by The Phlox of Pink at The Old Printworks, Balsall Heath December 6th (18+)