First Summer of Better Stories Grant...

Delighted to start sharing stories from our Summer of Better Stories micro-grant programme with Upstream Ideas. Applications are still very much open, so please do apply and take the first step in your own story now. Head to our Summer of Better Stories page to learn more.

Our first award goes to Emily, read on to learn a bit about her and what she'll be using her £50 for.

SYS: Tell us a little bit about yourself:

Emily: Hello. I am 32, have lived in Brighton for 2 years, prior to which I have adventured extensively, returning back to the UK from 6 years in South Africa to start a Masters. I am also an artist and musician and have just released my first track with band Fresh School Buddha

SYS: What would you like to use the £50 for? Who will benefit from it - it could be just you or other people:

Emily: I have just finished my degree and feel a desperate need to reconnect with visual art. In the past I have focused on sculpture, creating large pieces of work based around bodies and the spaces between us. I am keen to reconsider the medium of painting, having recently dabbled a couple of times I feel it will be hugely therapeutic for me to apply myself to this medium. I hope to buy an easel with the funds, and generally like painting on found objects and waste! (such as off cuts of plaster board..) It will be just me who benefits, (well I guess those around me to as I will be in better spirits! and they can see the work!) Longer term, if I am any good, or have enough confidence, I would love to work towards an exhibition, maybe next years open houses.

SYS: How does it fit into your story or what story are you starting here? (It could be just your story or include other people's stories too):

Emily: I have worked in some really challenging environments and at time felt as though my wings have been clipped and I need to stretch out and remember the other elements of my identity. I feel that the use of an easel will help with this, letting me unleash the thoughts and feelings that are muddling about inside me. I did an undergrad in creative expressive therapies and have the utmost respect for the power of arts for personal transformation, so I hope to transform.

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We're so glad to be able to help out Emily, and hope to help out lots more people in the coming weeks and months, as well as following up on hearing on how some of these stories unfold as time goes on. Why not head over to our website to apply for your own micro-grant and start living a better story today...