14 April 2014back

Creative Internships Blog Week 24

Sinéad Owens, WheelWorks

It seems like yesterday that I was writing my previous blog, time is flying by so quickly here. 

We have not stopped for the past few months. The month of March proved particularly hectic for all of us at the WheelWorks office. We had a plethora of workshops with groups all across Northern Ireland. That is the beauty of this organisation; especially the ArtCart, we can bring our artists and facilities to any location in Northern Ireland, be it a small village hall, in the middle of a field, or outside your local community centre. Each workshop was different in its own way. Particular highlights for me have been the ‘Kick Start the ArtCart’ consultation sessions and our different workshops surrounding the theme of St Patrick. 

Of course, there have been some fundraising highlights too; mainly being a funding application I completed in March. To begin the process I began recruitment of three separate groups, after discussions with the youth leaders I then met with the young participants and heard what types of workshops and sessions they would like to take part in and what themes they would like to explore. I then developed a project plan and put together an outline for a series of sessions with each group. After all of that I compiled a funding application which incorporated all three groups. I am still waiting to hear back from the funder but fingers crossed!! At the moment I’m keeping busy completing funding reports, it is that time of year after all. It is brilliant to get experience in this area, to learn that the job of a fundraiser isn’t just securing funds, but researching, monitoring and evaluating as well. 

I have also been given the chance to help expand my knowledge of project co-ordinating, which is fantastic. I am looking into potential groups to work with and helping to co-ordinate some summer activity for our ArtCart. This learning opportunity has been amazing and the skills I am being taught here are invaluable for my future. I can’t thank the staff of WheelWorks enough for all their guidance and support, especially for all the tips and hints they are giving me. 

Recently I began sessions with my Business Mentor, Vincent McCann. Vincent is the Operations Manager at the Market Place, Armagh. The Market Place is a theatre and arts centre that presents the best in arts and entertainment. It is a venue that I have always been interested in and have visited many times for different events. Vincent’s role is to help me to develop my professional practice, business thinking and career development. Because one day I plan to run my own arts organisation, Vincent’s help is indispensible in helping me learn how different arts organisations are run. 

I feel like all my blogs are just me harping on about how much of a wonderful experience I’m having, but it’s all true. I am so thankful to Arts & Business NI for giving me the opportunity to work with such an amazing company and I can’t help but smile when I talk about working with WheelWorks this past few months. 

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