Latest news, events and useful links

Artslink - Healthy Body and Healthy Mind

Welcome to our bumper buffet of difference dance styles to check out and dance and movement activities to try, all of which will help keep you healthy and fit!

We have a feast of activities for you to explore over the Easter holidays. In between chomping your Easter eggs, watch, rewatch and try out some moves and grooves from some of the leading dance practitioners in the West Midlands.

Available from the 5 April 2021 onwards and is suitable for all ages.

Visit the Artslink website


Sports Link - Free Easter Half term 2021 online events

Join West Midlands Virtual Schools this Easter Half term and enjoy an array of Sports activities for you and your young person to enjoy.

Dates of the online events are:

  • 13 April 2021 - 16 April 2021.

Ping away with Table Tennis England, enjoy fun filled fitness sessions with Gwen, get your P.E on with Embrace...plus much more! Keep an eye out for more information coming soon.

Download the flyer for more information about the online events


West Midlands Virtual Schools Artslink

Watch filmed-live shows from your living room!

Artslink have collected two of Disney's best loved shows - Frozen and Beauty and the Beast - filmed at the Disney Cruise Line Theatre (yes, on a ship!), and combined them with some extra activities so you can lose yourself in the wonder of Disney - something for the whole household to enjoy together.

  • Enjoy performances filmed live.
  • Watch behind-the-scenes clips to see how the show were put together.
  • Sing along with some of your favourite songs.
  • Get crafting using ideas from the shows.

It is all free of charge, no booking is required.

Visit the Artslink website to take part

Download the Artslink Disney Flyer


West Midlands Virtual School YouTube Channel

Don't miss every Wednesday on the West Midlands Virtual School (WMVS) Children in Care Foundation YouTube Channel will be releasing videos with @jasampawfarr aimed at empowering and unlocking our young people's potential!

Visit YouTube for more information about the WMVS YouTube channel


Primary Maths at Home sessions - February 2021

The West Midlands Virtual Schools Foundation supported by Dudley Virtual School are hosting a free webinar for Carers to help with making maths fun at home.

Download the flyer for available dates and to register onto the free sessions


The Hive - Offer

The Hive provides a safe path to personal and community growth. Their projects transform lives through inspiring, inclusive, creative experiences in Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin.

Their work has a wellbeing focus and aims to support the needs of vulnerable and disadvantaged people through arts and culture. Specifically, the focus is on working with children, young people and young adults, however this is not exclusive and their charity responds to the needs of our local communities and implements targeted work with older people, as well as inter-generational projects.

Download The Hive Offer for January 2021 to April 2021 events

For more information about any of the projects please contact: admin@hiveonline.org.uk.


Artslink - Connect and Create

Artslink is supported by all 14 West Midlands Virtual Schools, and aims to ensure that all care experienced children and young people in the region have the opportunity to get involved in arts and culture and develop as learners, as people and as artists. They offer:

  • events run by clusters of Virtual Schools, such as Give It A Go days (trying new artforms and activities out) and professional artists supporting other Virtual School events such as award ceremonies
  • regional activities, such as Look Inside days (e.g. BBC, music studio) and massed performing groups, such as choirs, for showcase events
  • a website packed with creative challenges, films, links and career guidance specially commissioned for care experienced young people, and showcasing their own work, as well as information about local opportunities.

Download the Connect and Create flyer for arts and cultural activities to do at home

Visit the Artslink Connect and Create website to join our mailing list to receive updates on the latest arts and culture opportunities for care experience children and young people


Institute of Education survey - The role of a Designated Teacher research

Lauren Boesley is a Trainee Educational Psychologist at the UCL Institute of Education. For the thesis research, she is exploring the role of designated teachers, including how they work with the virtual school to support outcomes for looked after and previously looked after children.

She hopes to gather views from both designated teachers and virtual schools across the country using a short questionnaire (approx. 10 minutes). We hope you will be interested in helping with this important project.

Designated teachers

Visit the Institute of Education website to access the questionnaire

By taking part in this research, you will be helping to identify systems and processes that can advance and support the designated teacher role. Once the project is complete, you will receive a copy of the report that summarises key findings. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact Lauren.

Download the information flyer to find out more about the project


St Giles SOS+ Programme

Our Gangs and County Lines presentation consists of speakers utilising their lived experience within the criminal justice system to unpack and explore the realities and consequences of county lines drug smuggling, gang involvement, criminal exploitation and serious youth violence. Perspectives from previous perpetrators and runners/transporters, combined with relevant case studies, aid audiences in gaining an authentic and credible understanding of this complex and cross cutting issue. The presentation also covers signs and indicators; motives and purposes; perspectives of both victims and perpetrators; common misconceptions amongst professionals; and various intervention strategies/ suggestions for long-term solution.

If you are interested in finding out more, please contact SOS+ at sosplusadmin@stgilestrust.org.uk.

Download the flyer for more information and details of the dates


Future Generations

Future generations provides an individual focussed progression plan to support children and young people from ages 10 through to 18 years old who are in care, and those that are getting ready to leave the care system.

Download the Future Generations booklet for more information on how to get involved


Voice of the Child 2020

The Voice of the Child 2020 is hosting live interactive webinars, which will include interactive workshops, quizzes and games. It will have a focus on domestic abuse and the impact that this has on children and young people - dealing with court proceedings.

Download the Voice of the Child 2020 information leaflet for more information on webinars

Download the application form to book a place on the Voice of the Child 2020 webinar


Be Inspired

An inspiring and entertaining virtual experience for care experienced young people across the UK aged 14 - 25 Be Inspired is an event that seeks to inspire, empower and equip care experienced young people, who want to take hold of their future, learn about different career opportunities and connect with each other.

After growing up in care from the age of 4, founder Ashley John-Baptiste, now a Senior BBC Reporter and Presenter, has always had his mind set on creating something for young people with similar stories to his own that would help them believe in themselves, see a better future and find out about all the opportunities out there.

Visit the Be Inspired website for events that inspire, empower and equip care experienced young people 

Download the Be Inspired information leaflet for more information on upcoming events


Arts Award Discover – online with Artslink

Creating a universal entitlement to arts and culture for all children and young people linked to a Virtual School in the West Midlands

Artslink and the West Midlands Virtual Schools are delighted to offer this opportunity:

Are you interested in the arts and aged 25 years or under? You could complete an Arts Award, certified by Trinity College, London. If you are interested let us know – artslinkwm@gmail.com. Its fun to do and easy to access.

Download the Artslink information leaflet about the Arts Award


The Transition Back To School and Supporting Carers of Children and Young People Webinar - 30 June 2020

We are pleased to announce the recording of the Transition Back To School and Supporting Carers of Children and Young People Webinar - 30 June 2020. Group chat messages that are referred to during the session are also available to view:


The Smash Room

The Smash Room is a professional recording studio and rehearsal room available for you to book.

The Smash Room offers access to four rehearsal rooms each fully equipped with:

  • 1 x Drum Kit
  • 3 x guitar amplifiers (more if required)
  • 1 x bass amplifier
  • 1 x PA system for vocals.

 In addition to the practice rooms they also offer a repair shop where you can get all your amplifiers/PA's and other electrical equipment fixed up by their specialist team and a top quality recording studio for artists who want to record / mix / master their album /ep or songs.

Visit The Smash Room website for more information on professional recording studios and rehearsal rooms


Voices through time projects - story of care ambassador networks

We are currently recruiting for volunteers to take part in our story of care ambassador network. Participants will:

  • be part of a ground breaking project that brings the unheard history of care to life for young people
  • help shape the programme and drive it forward, including co-creating our digital campaign to celebrate care experienced young people and their history
  • gain valuable experience in marketing, project design, digital media and more.

The opportunity is open to all 16 to 25 year olds with care-experience.

Visit the Coram website for information about the voices through time projects

Download the story of a care ambassador network - information leaflet

Last updated: 31/03/2021 12:46

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