David Wood statement
I believe that the Arts Backpack idea could be the most significant notion and possibility to have surfaced in the twenty years or more since our charity began. The idea confirms ACA’s belief that all children are entitled to attend arts events and experiences. This belief is enshrined in Article 31 of the UN Convention of the Rights of the Child.
The Arts Back Pack is a novel and appealing way of ensuring that every child can expect to experience the arts several times a year.
The idea is important for children.
It is important for parents.
It is important for teachers.
It is important for children’s arts practitioners and for companies and arts organisations – theatres, museums, concert halls, art galleries etc.
It is important for local councils, and for government. By helping to activate the intentions of Article 31, it is a way of complying with the Article and encouraging interest in the arts.
It is important for the medical profession, who regularly tell us that the arts help children’s wellbeing.
It is important for the Arts Council, who would recognise that attendances at arts events and performances would increase.
It ticks so many boxes!
The Arts Back Pack could revitalise the organisations and companies that provide arts for children, by instantaneously increasing the numbers of children able, via school and/or parent, to take advantage of the offer. In the long term, it would make children’s experience of the arts something that is part of their mainstream education, rather than an add-on or luxury, part of the cake rather than the cherry.
David Wood OBE, ACA President