The coronavirus lockdown has not stopped homeless arts charity Accumulate from giving people on the margins the chance to get creative.
Dubbed “The Art School for the Homeless”, Accumulate had a busy year planned, with the first-ever radio station operated by homeless people and a graphic novel was also pencilled in, written by people on the streets telling their stories in their own words and images.
But the pandemic has seen the charity pivot to meet the arty needs of rough sleepers currently housed in hostels for their own protection from the virus. So far, with the help of Crisis funding, Accumulate has shipped out 500 art kits a week to individuals living in 31 different hostels and emergency accommodation.
Each art box features a themed project inside as well as all the materials needed, tasking people to turn an everyday object into a building, for example.
The art boxes have had a positive impact on mental health, says Accumulate’s Emma Carboni.
She told The Big Issue: “The project just keeps getting bigger and bigger with more and more hostels and individuals wanting to get involved. Some of the work they are creating is brilliant.”