Last year, a special thing happened with The #Artskickers Awards. What started as a one-woman mission to say thanks to some good people turned into a full on glamorous event, with lashings of volunteer spirit, powerful speeches, iconic gongs (scroll to the end for a look), roof-lifting performances and proper real life IMPACT. It didn’t just end when we left the gorgeous venue and headed over to the Ace Hotel, goody bags in hand. That was all just the beginning. Turns out we’d started a movement.
People got together that night and made new things happen — Francesca and Brooke from the London Loom and Nikki from Art Macabre did Frieda Kahlo workshops. Submit to Love met Hackney Arts, Ruff Sqwad got it on with Well Street Market and a whole bunch of #Artskickers got together for #GillettForGrenfell and raised money and spirits for the victims of the Grenfell tragedy.
The emerging artists who performed that night had windows and doors of opportunity blown open — Nesah, the girl who sang the closing number, got mentorship from one of the judges and is now a Disney scholar at the Royal Academy. Spoken word artist DiAndre, who opened the show, performed for an Ambassador, interviewed Rudimental and freestyled with an orchestra. He’s now writing his own show while studying for his A-levels. Freya wrote a play and Jude Law was in it. For reals! Watch this👇
But of all the impacts of that night, the one I feel is the most important is that for one night of the year and in the afterglow, 200 good people felt valued. I believe that when we feel valued, we have purpose and are inspired to do good work. In challenging circumstances, feeling appreciated is a crucial motivating factor.
“The deepest craving of human nature is the need to feel appreciated” – A. Wise Person
I’ve come to discover (thanks to all the funding applications I’ve made this past year) that the value of “feeling valued” is a very hard thing to measure… It’s an intangible thing but it’s definitely real. If anecdotes and thank you notes were the basis for an impact report, ours would be off the charts.
“Winning the award was such a morale boost, for us and the people who come to our classes and participate in our programmes. They were so proud of us and that all contributes to recovery. Not only that, winning awards helps us unlock crucial funding. So yeah, the #Artskickers Awards is a very good thing!”
Paul Monks, Core Arts (winner, Community Superhero Award 2017)