Young Leaders

DIY’s Passing the Baton – our programme for young leaders – is developing leadership skills and confidence.

Photo of DIY's Young Leaders at the Lowry learning Circus Tricks! Part of our Passing the Baton programme for young people in Salford

Passing the Baton Young Leaders visit to the Lowry to learn Circus Tricks

Passing the Baton Young Leaders Group

All DIY Group Activities are currently suspended because of the Coronavirus.

DIY are staying safe and getting creative at home. Visit our new ‘Create and Connect’ page for ideas and resources whilst we are keeping safe at home. Don’t forget you can follow us on social media too – Connect with us using the links at the bottom of this page.

Monday’s 5.30pm – 7.30pm at the Beacon Centre, Salford.

Our Young Leaders Group is for young disabled people aged 16 – 30 years who wish to develop leadership and employability skills through the arts and drama. It is run by DIY in partnership with You Can Youth Club. Young people can gain an Arts Award Qualification (Explore to Gold). This is a nationally recognised qualification and Silver and Gold are recognised as Levels 2 & 3 on the Regulated Qualifications Framework.

We want to grow the offer for young people with learning disabilities in transition to adulthood. Our ambition is for all young people with an interest in the arts and theatre to have the opportunity to achieve their aspirations through youth leadership, mentoring as a performer; inspiring others and challenging Learning Disability stereotypes.

“It’s like passing on a kind of baton, where you learn all skills and you just pass it onto someone else… it makes me feel happy because it’s like I’m showing them how to be – like a role model.” Charlotte

Our Young Leaders group is open to young people with a disability aged 16 – 30 years. During the sessions young people will be able to work towards Bronze, Silver and Gold Arts Award Qualifications.

Develop Skills and Gain a Qualification!

Both Silver and Gold Arts Award require young people to develop their artistic practise. They will demonstrate a positive attitude, willingness to learn, time keeping and organisation skills and the ability to be flexible. By sharing their work with audiences, young people develop their personal presentation, communication and self-promotion.

Young people will also participate in an Arts Leadership Project. They will work together to build leadership skills and take shared responsibility for project management and organisation. Working collaboratively, they will build tolerance and resilience and a sense of community. DIY Theatre Company support young people to effectively plan projects, reflect on their progress and problem solve throughout their Arts Award journey.

What have we done so far?

Artistic Development

In 2019 our Young Leaders successfully applied to the Salford CVS / NHS Salford CCG Youth Wellbeing Fund with “Circus Tricks!”

We have worked with professional circus artists and visited The Lowry to watch ‘Circus 1903’ and learn about the show from the Ringmaster & Peanut the Elephant!

Circus Tricks! Continues to develop in 2020. Thanks to funding from Youth Music, we will be working with professional musicians to develop a touring performance suitable for children and young people.

Leadership in Action

The Young Leaders plan and deliver a weekly Drama Club at You Can Youth Club.  Drama Club is open to young people with learning disabilities aged 10 – 25.  For more info on Drama Club click here

In 2019, DIY’s Young Leaders were already making an impact in local schools and colleges where they delivered outreach projects:

  • Chatsworth Futures, delivering a six week ‘Discover Arts Award’ project on the theme of the ‘Sea-side’
  • Chatsworth High School, where we ran a 4 week Music & Leadership project. We mentored Year 10 & 11 students to develop their leadership skills. This included supporting them to deliver a music session to younger students.
  • Springwood Primary School, where our Young Leaders planned and delivered a workshop on ‘Space.’ This supported the student’s to gain their Explore Arts Award.

“The relaxed atmosphere of the sessions gives every student a voice and an opportunity to express themselves, helping them to develop the confidence and skills they need to self-advocate, become independent and lead” Feedback from school staff

“There is a really warm, supportive atmosphere in DIY sessions. Students are always encouraged to make their voice heard and feel confident in doing this in a safe environment. The workshops are also really fun and creative” Feedback from school staff

Four of our Young Leaders also reached Arts Award Advisor Status!

“It’s a really inspirational project as our young people can see that there are real and authentic opportunities for them post-education, when they work with the artists from DIY who they can relate to.” Feedback, Chatsworth High School


DIY Theatre Company would like to thank the following organisations for their support for this work

Logos of our funders, The National Lottery Community Fund, Youth Music, and of the National Lottery via Arts Council England, Salford CVS and NHS Salford CCG, Arts Award, and partner You Can.