Developing Inclusion at The Atkinson
September 2016 – March 2017
The Atkinson has been awarded funding through the Arts Council’s Museum Resilience funding to establish new business models and sources of funding to strengthen our delivery of health and
wellbeing engagement programmes. We have been developing new approaches and models of service delivery and relationships to access new sources of funding, in order to create a powerful case for giving for funding from trusts and foundations.
We have recently completed the first phase of a Children & The Arts Start Programme, where we tested new ways of working with children with special educational needs including autism, working with three schools, and for some this has been the first time they have undertaken a school visit of any kind. Through this initial partnership we have worked with SEN children and schools, visiting our theatres and galleries, where they have had the chance to take part in ambitious creative activities – very different from what they can do in school. There were challenges but we had very positive feedback too: “We really value the experience of working with an artist in a different setting and it is important for our children to broaden their experiences and interests”.
We want to seize on what has been achieved so far in inspiring young people, promoting self-confidence and developing communication. We want this activity to lay the foundations for long-term partnerships between The Atkinson and SEN schools, as well as with children and their families.
This has already been an important project for us and we want to take it much further in developing the activities, the resources and the whole of our offer, to meet the needs of SEN and ASD children and their families. As an arts centre, we have an amazing opportunity to develop a holistic offer for visitors with special educational needs and autism that involves the whole of The Atkinson’s programmes and building – the performing arts, the museum, the art gallery and the library.
We need an experienced and creative Freelance Consultant to work with us over the next 6 months helping us to:
- Support the second phase of the Start programme and use its delivery to inform the development of our whole offer for SEN and ASD children and their families
- Increase the confidence of SEN and ASD children and their families in visiting The Atkinson
- Develop a series of funding applications to trusts and foundations to extend our work
- Feed in to the development of productive project partnerships within Sefton Council – Aiming High, Children’s services – as well as with external partnerships with the voluntary sector and schools.
An experienced and creative Freelance Consultant is required to help us to develop a range of programmes and activities that enable The Atkinson to:
- Explore how the arts can enable SEN and ASD children to develop creativity and confidence
- Increase the opportunities for SEN and ASD children and their families to experience and engage together with a range of creative activities
- Test new creative approaches and a new creative offer that is tailored to meet the needs and interests of SEN and ASD children and their families
- Undertake intensive fundraising to expand these programmes from 2017 onwards
- To develop creative engagement activities with artists, that test access opportunities across the art forms – including relaxed theatre performances, storytelling, and practical art activity.
- To build new partnerships with schools and organisations working with SEN and ASD
- To involve children and their families in every aspect of the project
- To organise and deliver staff training and development to increase confidence
- To support organisational change
- To identify where physical changes need to be made to the building
- To support developments in communications, marketing and delivery of our offer
- To develop creative, robust and appropriate evaluation of impact that will underpin fundraising and commissioning
You will be experienced and passionate about:
- Working with artists and creative practitions to develop person-centred creative activities and programmes across the art forms, rather than specialist art therapy
- Involving children and their families in every aspect of project development
- Enabling SEN children develop independently, confidently and creatively.
- Working with and inspiring a wide range of external partners and stakeholders.
You will be a creative and strategic facilitator and project manager, with:
- Extensive experience of working with SEN children and their families
- Excellent contacts and networks across the voluntary and third sector
- Excellent understanding of SEN education programmes
- Experience of developing and delivering staff training
You will have excellent skills and experience in
- written and verbal communication with a wide range of audiences
- developing evaluation and advocacy materials
- administration, financial and project management; with a high level of accuracy and attention to detail
- organising events and activities in a cultural organisations
- successful funding applications to charities, trusts and foundations and research councils
You will have knowledge of Health and Safety policies and an understanding of equal opportunities
Contract to start in early September 2016 and run to 31st March 2017
Consultant to work closely with The Atkinson’s Director and Lifelong Learning Officer. A desk can be made available within The Atkinson if required by the Consultant for occasional use.
Up to £6500 + VAT total fee including all travel costs and expenses
To be paid in installments over project period
How to Apply
Please send or email your CV, plus a covering letter (up to 2 pages) telling us why you are interested in the role, describing your relevant experience and suitability for the role. You may wish to include web links to relevant projects that you have delivered. The names and contact details for two referees must be included:
Please send your applications to:
Helen Thackray, Lifelong Learning Officer, The Atkinson, Lord Street, Southport, PR8 1DB
+44(0)151 934 2081; Helen.Thackray@
Applications must be received by noon on 15th August 2016. Late applications cannot be considered.
We will interview shortlisted candidates on 22nd August 2016, at The Atkinson.
We aim to make a decision on the same day as the contract needs to start in September
If you have any queries about this research brief please do not hesitate to contact