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Theatre Royal Stratford East today announce their new partnership with the West Ham United Foundation, in creating a programme of work for schools, named Creative Words. This programme will see West Ham United Foundation partner with Theatre Royal Stratford East to deliver a creative arts, poetry, drama and spoken word programme at Kingsford and Royal Docks Community Schools. The programme will support vulnerable young people within secondary schools to positively enhance their English Language and Literacy attainment levels, whilst providing unique opportunities to develop confidence and engage with their local theatre through interactive sessions and a celebratory performance. Creative Words will run from 3 November until 16 March 2018 with the launch event on Friday 3 November.

Artistic Director of Theatre Royal Stratford East, Nadia Fall, said of the partnership. “We are thrilled to be working in partnership with West Ham United Foundation to launch the Creative Words programme. It’s a unique and vital opportunity that will give young people a platform to share their stories and explore their creativity. This is a chance to help encourage and support local young talent and we are so excited to be part of that.”

West Ham United Foundation are focused on extending their employment pathways within the Foundation for local young people. This programme will provide pre-16 provision to engage with young people wanting to follow the creative industry pathway. In addition, this programme will provide a stepping-stone opportunity for young people to then transfer onto the Foundation's Film School Programme as a 16+ opportunity after secondary school and continue their pathway.

Joe Lyons, Chief Executive of the West Ham United Foundation today said "It is fantastic to be working in partnership with Theatre Royal Stratford East on this innovative programme. Our aim is to ensure our local young people have unique and inspiring opportunities to succeed, and this wonderful new initiative will play a key part in that. I am looking forward to seeing the programme develop, and am already looking forward to the celebratory performance!"

Following a successful pilot programme within the 2016/17 academic year at Kingsford; twenty five young people participated in the scheme, twenty young people performed a performance art piece within a school assembly, two young people joined the public speaking debate team and two young people performed poetry at Cardinal Pole School.

Lydia Casey, Literacy Co-ordinator at Kingsford Community School said “Kingsford Community School is thrilled to be partaking in the creative learning partnership with Theatre Royal Stratford East and the West Ham United Foundation. The Creative Words Programme will be a fantastic opportunity for our pupils to develop their creativity, communication and confidence skills. We are very much looking forward to seeing the progress that the students have made over the course of the project.”

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