My name is Elspeth (also known as Elle) and I have always known I have wanted to ‘help’ others. I am the proud founder of WISE UP Workshops CIC.
Over the past 15 years I have worked in various roles including support work and in education roles mentoring young people with additional needs and emotional & behavioural challenges. I returned to education as an adult and opted for an intro course in counselling skills which led to the bug for learning again. After attending university to complete a drama degree I created WISE UP Workshops – A well-being community organization offering individuals the skills to build independence through art forms for all ages and all abilities. My aim- to provide a space for everyone to ‘be themselves’ whatever their background, whatever their learning difference.
4 years later the WISE UP journey continues, I have gone from a one woman band to a multi-skilled and talented team of 12. We have put on devised productions, we run 4 local after school drama clubs, we have worked with local schools and families and despite my personal setback of beating cancer twice I am more passionate than ever to ‘help people help themselves through the arts’.
My early career was in social housing and the development of sustainable communities. Through this work I recognized the importance of spending time to understand the needs of individuals in those communities in order to ‘help them to help themselves’.
I joined WISE UP workshops to offer business development support and learn more about the application of listening and understanding skills to help young people who face challenges in their lives. I have learnt so much while being part of WISE UP workshops, seeing and applying methods and skills within art, drama, play and talking to release each individual’s skills and strengths. Seeing the young people we work with grow in confidence and ability is rewarding and motivating.
My name is Ann Angus, I am retired and very much enjoy working in a voluntary capacity. In my working life I have always held a position dealing with the general public in managerial positions from catering to retail and latterly running my own hairdressing business.
I am a volunteer with WISE UP Workshops helping the team in the drama workshops, sometimes performing in them and assisting with productions as well as recently writing a play for the Morecambe Fringe Festival 2017. I see the difference that WISE UP makes to adults and children alike and as I too want to make a difference in people’s lives and eventually become involved in projects for the elderly in the near future.
I live in Edinburgh and work for WISE UP as the remote technical
assistant. I help with any technical assistance that WISE UP needs, such
as creating and maintaining the website, editing videos and creating
sound FX for the various productions.
I really enjoy working for WISE UP because I fully agree with the ethos
of the company and feel privileged to be a part of such important work.
I wish I lived a little closer so that I could be involved in the
workshops and really see the joy and excitement brought to the children
in each session.
My work with Wise Up is as a one to one outreach worker, where we use a therapeutic approach with young people to enable them to process emotions in a safe environment. I also work at wise up groups, where we use drama and arts to help children develop confidence, improve self esteem and have fun.
I passionately believe that creative practices can help people feel good about themselves and that often low level, sensitive and appropriate to the individual interventions can empower people to make enormous changes to their personal perceptions of self.
Working within Wise Up I have seen shy children and young people perform drama pieces in front of audiences; I have seen children who find peer interactions difficult, work with their peers to create imaginative stories and art pieces; and in my one to one work I have observed children express difficult emotions and feelings of conflict and resolve these issues, through the medium of creative art and play.
Hi, I’m Mollie and I am a Creative Practitioner working with people of all ages and based in the West End of Morecambe. Since 2003 I have been involved in a wide range of creative community projects across the North West. As part of the Wise-Up team, you might find me running story-telling sessions, story-based yoga movement, facilitating drama workshops or working behind the scenes developing scripts.
I believe the creative process has a huge part to play in our well-being and growth. Creating a safe space to play, to create, or just to be ourselves is something that is often ‘busied’ out of our day-to-day lives. Although it is always wonderful seeing someone celebrating a significant achievement, one of the most rewarding things for me is seeing the steps along the way, or those simple moments where someone is really enjoying what they’re doing. Something I have the privilege of seeing every day at Wise-Up!
Hello, my name is Ellie Edwards, I am 15 years old and I attend morecambe high school.
I am also a member of the wise up teens group, I enjoy this lots because it gives me experience of acting. This has helped me to feel more confident in my life, I used to be very shy and unsure of myself. Since being in the group I have had a lead role in a stage performance and am currently preparing for an audition for another lead role.
I also work as a volunteer with wise up at a children’s group in Morecambe. I like working with the children in the group and I enjoy helping them to act and create stories. One of my roles in this group is to think of new games for the children each week.
Hello my name is Kim Willoughby, I am 15 years old and I go to Morecambe high school.
I work as a volunteer with two wise up groups, the teens group and the primary age group.
I like being a wise up volunteer, because it gives me experience of working with children, which I like doing. Through doing this work, I have become experienced and confident to set behaviour boundaries for children in a kind way. I enjoy to see the children perform their own stories each week.
In June 2017 I was the assistant stage manager for our teens production of Comarella which gave me backstage experience and confidence.
My name is Aedan Phillips I am 15 years old and attend heysham high school, I initially began at summer school over a year ago, where I helped video and photograph the summer production.
I have enjoyed this and I have now moved onto become technical assistant as well as volunteering at teens group has enabled me to learn about production, lighting and sound.
I really enjoy working with others and socialising is also important to me, as an autistic person I usually struggle with this but wise up has brought me out of my shell and motivated me to work in a team setting and understand how to communicate with kids my age and the public.