Heritage Graffiti Project inspires young people

Wednesday 02 April 2014

John Griffiths, Minister for Culture and Sport, visited HM Prison and Young Offenders’ Institution Parc, Bridgend on 2 April to gain an insight into how heritage and archaeology can inspire and help rehabilitate young people.

  • Heritage Graffiti Project

    Heritage Graffiti Project

  • Heritage Graffiti Project

    Heritage Graffiti Project

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  • Heritage Graffiti Project

    Heritage Graffiti Project

Cadw is leading a Heritage Graffiti Project in conjunction with Parc Prison, run by G4S Care and Justice Services, which aims to contribute towards the rehabilitation of young people by helping them learn valuable lessons from their heritage. By introducing young people to archaeological artefacts and explaining what they meant to the people who used them, Cadw enables young people to explore themes of identity and community.  

The young people involved were tasked to tell the story of Welsh heritage using archaeological artefacts as a starting point for inspiration. Archaeology and painting workshops were led by Cadw with professional support so participants could explore the concept of heritage and its relevance to modern society, and a professional graffiti artist worked with the group to creatively express their stories in a vibrant graffiti mural.

The mural is on display within the prison, painted directly on to the walls of one of the exercise yards.

John Griffiths said: 'This project aims to help the young people involved relate to the places they come from, and to appreciate the things that make these places special.

'Graffiti art is familiar to many of these individuals, and this project allows them to learn about their shared past and express their heritage in a modern way.

'Additionally by recording and documenting their work through photography and film the participants gain technical and transferrable skills. This will increase their prospects of finding a job when they are released.'

Laurence Bater, Creative Arts Curriculum Manager from Parc Prison/G4S added: ‘The philosophy of Parc Prison is to rehabilitate offenders and equip them to re-integrate into mainstream society on release, and this project is a great way for the participants to gain valuable skills, whilst at the same time providing an opportunity to participate in a fun and engaging activity and learn about Welsh heritage. ‘

The Heritage Graffiti project was initially piloted as part of Welsh Government’s 'Changing Cultures' initiative in March 2013.

The aims and objectives of 'Changing Cultures' address the provision of life chances and opportunities for children and young people from disadvantaged backgrounds to participate in stimulating and educational activities. These activities seek to create positive benefits for children through accessing cultural experiences.