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Wheel of Love - Celebratory Showcase

Young Carers Action Day 2022
Virtual Tour
Mar 15, 2022
16th March
18:00 - 20:00

Artizan Gallery

Mar 16, 2022

Come together to view artwork created by the Young Carers of Torbay in awareness & support of Young Carers Action Day

Wheel of Love - Celebratory Showcase

Browse all work
Wheel of Love - Celebratory Showcase

Celebrating Young Carers

About the Exhibition

A remotely delivered series of workshops which brought together young carers from across Torbay to create a giant ‘Wheel of Love’, an art piece inspired by the spiritual mandala style, will belatedly be celebrated a year later as the final work is showcased for the first time!

Torbay Youth Trust commissioned the project with the support of Artizan Collective CIC following another successful series of creative workshops run during the first lockdown with Participate Arts. The new call sought ambitious proposals that could work flexibly given uncertainty at the time, but still offer a meaningful and valuable experience for the young people the Trust supports.

Caring, nurturing and compassion are behaviours found throughout all the natural world including many animal and bird species. The ‘Wheel of Love’ project, which was delivered by visual artist and designer Shiraaz Ali, was an opportunity for the young carers Torbay Youth Trust supports to explore their evolving role in a positive, fulfilling and collective way.

The project is based on the Mandala, a pattern believed to be created using sacred geometry which guides the very atoms that make us and the solar system that we inhabit. The ‘Wheel of Love’ is inspired by the dedication, compassion and unconditional love inherent in caring in all its forms.

Each participant received a panel that forms part of the Mandala whole and materials with which to decorate it. Through guided sessions, they were given the opportunity to explore different materials, techniques and styles, before applying what they learnt to their panel, with the opportunity to express their experiences through this creative outlet. All the panels have now been brought together to form a one and half metre wide mandala style wheel, which will go on display at Artizan Gallery and tour to other venues, before finding a permanent display with the Trust.

The project was also supported by South Devon College and the South Devon Marine Academy who constructed the panels and framework.

The project was funded by the Imagine This Torbay Partnership.

Exhibiting Artists

Caring for Torbay Young Carers

Caring for Torbay Young Carers
Torbay Youth Trust Young Carers Service are standing shoulder to shoulder with young people and families they work with to celebrate National Young Carers Action Day on March 16th.

Torbay Youth Trust run the Young Carers Service on behalf of Torbay Children’s Services, and are responsible for assessing the impact of a caring role on a young person’s life. They work closely with our schools and communities, raising awareness of young carers issues and creating opportunities for young carers to thrive, have fun and find companionship outside of their caring role. The Youth Trust have just celebrated the end of their second year and are looking back at the impact of Covid 19 on their first two years.

Jo Morrell, Torbay Youth Trust Director: “Little did we know when we opened our doors on the 1st of February 2020 that the world was about to turn upside down a few weeks later. We are so proud of how our little team have kept essential contact with young carers’ families and young people through very difficult times.”

Angela Poole, Young Carers Schools Worker: “We made contact with over 300 families within the first two months of the first lockdown. This contact was very important as quite often they had no other outside support. Our priority was to contact the young carers families where there were known medical needs and where they had only one parent at home. We then moved on to others who were known to us due to disability or mental ill health or were sibling carers. Again, focussing on lone parent/carer home situations, because if their parent became unwell the young carer would have to deal with this with no other adult in the home. Contact was maintained throughout this critical time to ensure health was checked on and families had enough food, medicines etc. Families had my number and my phone stayed on 24/7”

Over the past 2 years, the Young Carers Service has:

- Offered Young Carers Assessments to 294 children and young people

- Organised over 60 activities for young carers, from a 2- week music residency with Bath Philharmonic Orchestra, to a cookery project with South Devon College, Rockfish and Babbacombe Lions, to online art sessions to keep young carers connected

Sent out 8 Young Carers newsletters to over 300 families, full of information and support

- Delivered over 100 hampers and gifts to young carers

- Distributed over 50 activity and exercise packs to young carers during lockdown in partnership with Active Devon

- Delivered 600 Christmas and Easter gift bags with donations from local partners and community supporters

Katie Chivers, a Torbay young carer, has been part of the Torbay Youth Trust Young Leaders group and was also taken on as the Trust’s first Young Worker in their commitment to create employment opportunities for young people.

Katie: “The Young Carers Service have always been there for me on my darkest days but have also lifted me up on my happiest. They are a group of amazing people with the kindest hearts and are always there to offer a helping hand. The activities offer great opportunities to learn new skills and make lots of friends. I’ve formed friendships that will last a lifetime with people who understand what I’m going through and learned skills I wouldn’t have learned. I will forever be grateful for what they have done for me and my family”

“I love being part of the Torbay Youth Trust team. It’s like one big family all working together, everyone is so kind and thoughtful, it really is a place like no other and it’s an honour to be part of the team.” Katie, 2022

Katie will be working with the team during the week of Young Carers Action Day when there is a week-long awareness raising roadshow planned in our schools and colleges to ensure issues that young carers face are understood and identified. The team will be out in force, offering assemblies and lunch clubs in our schools and colleges, including an event at South Devon College on the 16th.

Close supporters of the Young Carers Service are Artizan Gallery, who, alongside the Imagine This partnership, the police POCA fund and South Devon College, helped create a collaborative art project during lockdown which united young carers online in the creation of a Wheel of Love mandala to celebrate the unique role of young carers. The mandala will be showcased at the gallery on the evening of the 16th in celebration of Young Carers Action Day, from where it will then be taken on a roadshow around key venues in the Bay to raise awareness about our local young carers.

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