We EDUCATE those children using exciting, creative programmes designed to find practical and inspiring solutions.
We EMPOWER them, allowing the new generation to flourish with confidence and resilience.
But don't just take our word for it...
Our friends at Filton Avenue Primary School Bristol give us an honest review…
Founded in April 2011 by Krystal Keeley, Claire Farnham and Cat Sparkes, Unique Voice have become a strong, self-sustained social enterprise. As directors we manage the company, developing our strategy, service, relationships, brand and future – of course, we are still very much involved in creating & delivering projects too. We met and trained at Bath Spa University. Shortly after graduation, we started Unique Voice with no financial investment – now we are proudly in our 8th year, a thriving social enterprise.
Working in schools and the community we have formed a reputation for high quality projects with positive, long lasting outcomes. Our ability to engage children from all walks of life and hugely varying learning abilities, to help them develop in their emotional maturity has become recognised and respected – we are now a well known provider for early intervention and outcome driven projects.
We have a huge respect for schools and councils who recognise that developing children’s emotional health is a vital part of them growing up. It is all to clear that the focus on academic achievement is disproportionate, not allowing teachers the time and space needed to support their students emotionally.
As an organisation we aim for this to change, there is clear evidence to tell us that a healthy emotional well-being can have a significant positive impact on peoples mental and physical health as well as their academic achievements and social life.
So it seems strange that there is such a significant gap in an emotional education for children.
Nations complete to have a population of the highest academic achievers, so they can feel proud of their society. Can we change this? Compete for a population who are the happiest, the kindest, the most compassionate and empathetic? We will try… small stones make big ripples.
Thank you for taking the time to find out about our work, please feel free to contact us if you would like to discuss our work, or have a project you would like us to be involved in.
Our Patron, Sir Patrick Stewart
We are very proud to have Sir Patrick Stewart as a patron and committed supporter, he has an active involvement in the development of Unique Voice. Patrick has been very interested in our work since we first made contact in 2011, and we regularly update him with the company’s ventures and partnerships.
“I became a patron because I strongly believe in the work Unique Voice does, for and with young people. I grew up in a household where respect was not always a priority. There was no valuable role model or example setter. Also, Unique Voice is a theatre company and I have been an actor for more than 50 years. I’m very impressed with the way they work. Their dedication, good humour and their powerful communication skills. The themes and actions in their work help young people to understand and deal with complex pressures or relationships and friendships. When young people do not have a sympathetic and experienced person to share their feelings with, then with loneliness and peer pressure it can led to bad choices. Unique Voice provides a living, vivid platform for drama, discussion and learning.”
Sir Patrick Stewart
At Unique Voice CIC we work with schools and the Bristol community to empower children emotionally through the use of Drama and the Arts. Working creatively allows us to engage with children who struggle emotionally, and who often have conditions which create social barriers. We strongly believe that an emotional education is equally, if not more important than an academic one – we aim to help the children we work with by developing their resilience, confidence, ability to express themselves, and developing respect and empathy for those around them.
There are two separate strands to Unique Voice; Education and Community, both are equally as important to us.
How do we do it?
We aspire to be as up-to-date as possible with current issues and the challenges affecting our young people today. By ensuring we are actively watching and listening to whats happening in the world – we can broaden our knowledge and keep our information relevant.
By visiting our client or commissioner we expand our understanding and knowledge of the challenges they are being faced with. We ensure all of the messages they want portrayed are in our work. Giving us the best possible change of achieving their desired outcomes.
Alongside this, we always aim (where possible) to run focus groups with the children who are experiencing the issue, giving us the real, honest truth of any situation.
We match desired outcomes of our client or commissioner to the need and experience of the children involved. Using this knowledge and our understanding of how children learn, we can approach an issue with sensitivity and accuracy.
Devising, playing, bouncing ideas and exploring the issues disused.
Here we find the creative ways in which we can discuss challenging issues and make them accessible to everyone to discuss.
The most exciting part! Our team of experienced and passioned staff always deliver our work to a very high standard.
Whether it is workshops, performances or films – our team are extraordinary at engaging and inspiring children and adults alike!
We are committed to evaluating our work, providing commissioners and clients with accurate data and recommendations for future work.
What sets us apart?
Every project we run, we evaluate. We understand the huge importance of proving the impact of our work, not just for ourselves but for those who purchase our services.
Schools are committed to proving their practice and we are committed to help them do so. That is why when a school asks us to work with their children on a specific subject e.g. anti-bullying, we monitor and evaluate the project to a high standard, providing the school with a detailed monitoring report for them to learn from and show to the community and Ofsted.
Commissioners and funders need to prove that their investment has provided the desired outcomes. Therefore we are careful to discuss exactly what evidence they require pre-project, allowing us to gather the appropriate data and feedback.
Our ability to engage
By using the Arts we are able to engage with people with many different learning abilities, languages, life experiences and backgrounds. Creativity gives us a tool which is fun and interactive, which people are drawn to participate in. It gives us the ability to openly discuss challenging subjects and for participants to experience the impact their actions could have on others in a safe environment.
There is no skill level, or academic achievement required for children to partake in our projects, we concentrate on emotions, the effects our actions can cause, and the importance of empathy, compassion and kindness.
Alongside all of this, our team are simply wonderful; fun, energetic thoughtful and caring… dare I also say they are rather cool!
93% of communication is non-verbal, which backs up our belief that we need to be helping people learn to communicate in order to achieve well-being. Our actions and expressions, our tone and aura, show a huge amount of what we are feeling and what we are trying to convey – shows our personality, which is who we are.
We believe our own emotions, our ability to handle them and the way we treat others is what makes the world go round and therefore we should help children with this.
Children are vulnerable, they are learning, they are changing and they are the future – we must help them with their emotional education. Humans need to feel Safe, Seen, Secure and Soothed – if we don’t feel this, it shows.
A world where we can add up big numbers and spell long words is important, but is it as important as being able to form relationships and treat others with respect?