Voluntary Arts week.

Govanhill Voice was sent a rather comprehensive guide to Voluntary Arts week. Whether you would like to find out about arts happening on your door step in the Southside, Glasgow, or indeed Scotland wide. This guide should be all you need to get started.

VAWeek montage

First a wee promotional video to give you an insight about what the week is about…

 VAweek logo

Voluntary Arts Week is a series of events showcasing the nations’ creativity run by Voluntary Arts with support from Spirit of 2012, an independent trust that funds projects that empower people to get out, be involved and feel better.

Taking place across the UK & ROI between 6 and 15 May this year, the Week’s programme is made up of a wide variety of creative and cultural events run by groups and organisations of all shapes and sizes.

Last year’s Voluntary Arts Week (15-24 May 2015) saw over 400 open rehearsals, showcase events, taster sessions and skills share events take place across the UK and Ireland involving 53,000 people. More importantly, 64% of participants said they were visiting a creative group in their local area for the first time and 68% planned to join a group or volunteer as a result of taking part.

There are no boundaries as to the type of cultural activity that can be part of this special Week and groups can register their events on the Voluntary Arts Week website.

It can be anything from one-off performances, to singing sessions, CraftBombs (eye-catching outdoor crafty installations), music and song Flashmobs and Woollen Woods featuring woolly creations in the trees.

  • Voluntary Arts Week (6-15 May 2016) is an annual celebration of participation in cultural activities across the UK and Republic of Ireland.
  • Woollen Woods, CraftBombs, Flashmobs, Come and Play/Sing Days are just a few types of creative activities happening during the Week.
  • Volunteer-led arts and crafts groups are invited to take part in the Week and list their events on the Voluntary Arts Week website. http://voluntaryartsweek.org/events-main/

The variety of Voluntary Arts Week events taking place in Scotland is inspiring.

Woodend Barn, an arts organisation and venue in Aberdeenshire, is hosting its first Woollen Woods this May with ‘wild garden’ as a theme.

Ashley Lawrie, Programming & Marketing Manager at Woodend Barn said: “Woodend Barn is delighted to be taking part in Voluntary Arts Week. Our wild garden will be transformed into a Woollen Wonderland where you might just find a knitted creature hiding in the grass or a felted frog perched by our pond.  We always get a huge response from the Banchory community and Aberdeenshire area and we’re looking forward to seeing the results of this group project.  If you’d like to take part, get in touch with us now to ensure your woollen creation can be included!”

Other Scottish events include CraftBombs in Inverness and Glasgow, an open day in the over 200 years old Theatre Royal Dumfries, Blairgowrie Choir teaming up with their Swedish counterparts for a sing off, and knitting workshops at Glasgow’s Tramway to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the involvement of the Glasgow Pals Battalions in the Battle of the Somme. The project aims to stitch together over 3000 knit/crochet squares in panels (one square to represent each member of the three Battalions) to create a series of panels, which will be displayed on the railings outside the Peoples’ Palace on Glasgow Green in July and August 2016. There is also the #lovetoCREATE Glenrothes Photography Exhibition by Glenrothes Camera Club, showcasing cultural groups from Glenrothes and the surrounding area at the Kingdom Shopping Centre from 6 May. Glasgow-based upcycling clothes group Sew La Tea Dough are hosting a refashioning and repair clothes workshop in preparation for their biannual This is Not a Fashion Show on 14 May.

For full list of Voluntary Arts Week events visit the website.

Some Events in the Southside include the following…

Sew La Tea Dough Refashioning, Repair collection workshops for This Is Not A Fashion Show

07/05/2016 (10:30 AM – 4:00 PM)

this is not a fashion show

Sew La Tea Dough’s (SLTD) upcycled garment collection will be presented at Govanhill Baths Community Trust ‘Rags to Riches ‘This Is Not A Fashion Show’ (TINAFS) bi -annual event on Saturday 14th May 2016 as  part of Voluntary Arts week.

Join SLTD volunteers for preliminary making workshops on Saturday 7th May to create an outfit for the collection (with additional sessions on Saturday 23rd April Saturday 30th April).

Do you love repair refashioning new from old?
Then sign up for Sew La tea Dough FREE workshops and let us help you with some extreme darning & patching OR bring a favourite worn out item and turn it into something bold and new for the catwalk.

Booking Details: No booking is required, just turn up

Contact Info –
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/sewlateadough/?fref=ts
Telephone: +441414332999


Govanhill Baths, GLASGOW


10/05/2016 (1:30 PM – 3:30 PM)

Craftbomb govanhill

Govanhill Craft Cafe is going to CraftBomb our local community garden for Voluntary Arts Week – come and join us!

Booking Details: While this event is free to attend, spaces are limited. To reserve your place call Jennifer on 0141 636 3668 or email jferguson@govanhillha.org

Contact Info –
Telephone: 0141 636 3668


Samaritan House, Glasgow

FREE Learn to Knit or Crochet Workshop

10/05/2016 (1:00 PM – 4:00 PM)


Would you like to learn to knit or crochet? SOCK (Somme Observed Community Knitting) Glasgow are running a FREE workshop at Tramway on the date above. All knitting needles/crochet hooks and yarn will be supplied and will be yours to take home at the end of the event.

Our project is commemorating the 100th anniversary of the involvement of the Glasgow Pals Battalions in the Battle of the Somme. We are putting together over 3000 knit/crochet squares in panels (one square to represent each member of the three Battalions), which will be displayed on the railings outside the Peoples’ Palace on Glasgow Green in July and August 2016.

We want as many people as possible to be able to contribute to the project and so we are offering these free workshops. These are open to anyone – aged 10 to 100!

(There is also a workshop on Sunday 8th May – see separate listing).

Booking Details: While this workshop is free, spaces are limited by the number of volunteer tutors available. To reserve your place please email: sockglasgow@hotmail.com with your name, contact telephone number, whether you wish to learn to knit or crochet, and your choice of yarn colour! Bookings must be made by Thursday 5th May.

Contact Info –
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/sockglasgow/
Telephone: 07929374536


Tramway, Glasgow

Glad To Be Something New Campaign 2016

12/05/2016 (7:30 PM – 9:30 PM)


GladRags Thrift is excited to announce the Launch of its new Campaign Glad To Be SomeThing New. Throughout the duration of our Campaign there will be various diverse workshops and events.
This first class will be a networking evening with local collaborators getting together to discuss how we can work together throughout our campaign. There will be a taster craft class held by local Business Feather Fable on paper flower making with limited spaces available.
If you are interested in running a workshop during our campaign? or attending some of our events and classes please get in touch via our events page on social Media Facebook and Instagram @gladragsglasgow or our new website due to be launched at the end of April.

Booking Details: call Bee on 0141 649 2596

Contact Info –
Website: coming soon!!! end of April
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/gladragsglasgow
Twitter: https://www.instagram.com/gladragsglasgow/
Telephone: 01416492596


GladRags Thrift, Shawlands


Playhouse Swing

15/05/2016 (1:00 PM – 6:00 PM)

pollochsheilds play house

Fancy shaking your thing to vintage tunes?

Southside Swing is rustling up a day of free taster classes, live music and swing dancing at Pollokshields Playhouse’s unique outdoor venue.

Originating in the dance halls of Harlem in the 1920s and 1930s, swing dancing is still very much alive today. It’s a joyous, friendly and fun dance guaranteed to put a smile on your face.

We’ll teach you the basics so you can take to the floor when the live jazz starts playing:

1.30pm–2.15pm: Charleston taster class
3pm–3.45pm: Lindy Hop taster class
4.30pm–5pm: Blues taster class

Sample fresh food, browse the pop-up stalls, have your hair styled and get your feet moving!
All welcome, no partner needed.

Contact Info –
Website: https://www.facebook.com/SouthsideSwing/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/events/990979430996130/


Pollokshields Playhouse, Glasgow


Rent, Rivets and Rotten Tatties – Nessie

14/05/2016 (11:00 AM – 12:00 PM)

WE ARE NOT REMOVING! The First World War saw fierce battles at home as well as abroad. When landlords greedily imposed dramatic rent increases in 1915, the women and children of Glasgow proved a force to be reckoned with – and Nessie is here to tell her part in that story. Wielding flour bombs and blowing tin whistles, ‘Nessie’ and the Rent Strike gang were a highly vocal part of a movement that went from tenements to dockyards and all the way to the court. Retelling the exploits of the time through stories and song, local writer Patricia Caird will throw light on a a big part of Scottish history through the eyes of this feisty teen.

Suitable for families

Booking Details: Booking required

Contact Info –
Website: http://www.festivalofmuseums.co.uk/rent-rivets-and-rotten-tatties-nessie/
Telephone: 0141 445 5866



Events in the rest of the city include the list below…


InterFest CraftBomb and workshops

18/04/2016 – 13/06/2016 (3:30 PM – 5:30 PM)

InterFest (International\Inter City Festival) invites adults, children and young people to celebrate creativity, community and cultural identity with a CraftBomb display in the heart of Glasgow on the 14 May 2016. 

Garnethill is a multicultural community situated in the centre of Glasgow. The community, made up of young,  old and new are getting together to create crafts in celebration of cultural diversity. Weekly CraftBomb workshops will take place in the run up to Voluntary Arts Week, with a CraftBomb display to showcase everyone’s contributions at Garnetbank Multicultural Centre on 14 May.

Join in and contribute to our community CraftBomb at one of our free workshops (starting after the Easter break, week/commencing 18 April):

  • Tuesdays, 9-11am@ Project Cafe, 134 Renfrew Street
  • Thursdays, 10am-12pm@ Garnethill Multicultural Centre (in the lounge)
  • Fridays, 3.30-5pm@ Garnethill Multicultural Centre in partnership with the Central and West Integration Network

These workshops are open to everyone and run on a drop-in basis, everything is provided but people are welcome to bring along donations of craft materials. If you have a crafty idea, bring it along and get others to help produce your idea.  Workshops will continue into June, in the lead up to the Scottish Refugee Festival, during which there will be an even bigger CraftBomb display and performances from local groups – more details on this event coming soon.

Be part of the action: If you would like to get involved and contribute to InterFest either as an individual crafter, volunteer or creative group, find out more here and get in touch.

Contact Info –
Website: https://centralandwestintegration.wordpress.com/home/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/centralandwestintegration/


Garnethill Multicultural Centre, Glasgow

Say It Ain’t Sew Glasgow

10/05/2016 (6:30 PM – 8:30 PM)

say it aint sew

Say It Ain’t Sew is a free weekly sewing and craft class open to all abilities that is held in Hillhead Bookclub every Tuesday from 6:30pm to 8:30pm.
To celebrate Voluntary Arts Week we will be making easy mini hats for everyone to wear!
All equipment is supplied and the class is aimed at beginners, though any level of ability can join in!
The class is held in a bar, so it is not recommended for anyone under the age of 18.
See you there for some sewing fun!

Booking Details: info@sayitaintsew.co.uk

Contact Info –
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/sewglasgow/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/SewScotland


Hillhead Bookclub, Glasgow

Crescendo open rehearsal (cabaret)

11/05/2016 (7:30 PM – 9:00 PM)


Crescendo is an all-age group of folk from across Glasgow who get together to make music and have fun. We sing, we dance (well, move around a bit), and we do a wee bit of acting sometimes! Basically, we’ll turn our hand to anything which people want to try out. Our youngest performer is 10 and our youngest at heart performer is 90!

Tonight we’re having an open rehearsal, a cabaret with some food and drinks, when we’ll perform some of the songs we’ve been learning, and we’ll encourage you, our audience, to join in too! We reckon that everyone can sing, especially when you get together with others – and in Crescendo, we’re all ‘gradually growing’!

Event is free to attend, but places are limited, so please reserve your place in advance via Eventbrite: www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/crescendo-open-rehearsal-cabaret-tickets-24898032686

Booking Details: Event is free to attend, but places are limited, so please reserve your place in advance via Eventbrite: www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/crescendo-open-rehearsal-cabaret-tickets-24898032686

Contact Info –
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Crescendo4all/
Twitter: @crescendo4all


Anderston Kelvingrove Parish Church, Glasgow


Cartoon and crafts for Kids!

11/05/2016 (12:00 PM – 2:00 PM)


Africa in Motion Film Festival in collaboration with the Central and Western Integration Network (CWIN) invite families to come along and experience a fun filled, craft and cinematic afternoon at Townhead Village Hall! Join us for a specially curated package of animation short films (see below) from across the African continent, as well as creative activities using crayons, plasticine, recyclables and other fun materials through our different craft stations. Snacks will be provided!

Mwansa the Great
Rungano Nyoni | Zambia|23m 2011| Nyanja
An eight-year-old boy who aspires to be a hero embarks upon a journey to prove his greatness, with unexpected consequences. A moving insight into childhood where fantasy jostles with reality as a young boy’s imagination transforms and empowers everyday life.

The Legend of Ngong Hills
Kwame Nyong’o| Kenya|10m 2011| English
Based on a Maasai folktale, this action/adventure short tells the story of how the horrible Ogre, who has a habit of attacking the Maasai village, falls in love with the beautiful young maiden Sanayian. Will the villagers finally find a way to trump the Ogre and protect their village?

Ding Dong
Animated! | Kenya | 2m | No dialogue
A playful plasticine animated short!

The Money Tree
Hawanatu Bangura| Sierra Leone | 7m 2011 | English
In The Money Tree a boy in Sierra Leone learns important lessons while trying to grow an orchard of money.

Frank Mukunday, Tresor Tshibangu Tshamala | DR Congo| 8m 2015 | No dialogue
The struggle of a mother fighting to preserve and protect her new-born baby, for whom she will have to brave dangers of all kinds summoned by nature and evil spirits.

Contact Info –
Website: http://www.africa-in-motion.org.uk/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/aimfilmfest/?fref=ts
Telephone: 07540271932


Townhead Village Hall, Glasgow


Glasgow’s Marvellous Medicine

14/05/2016 (10:00 AM – 4:00 PM)

From 1599 to the present day, Glasgow has been at the forefront of some amazing medical achievements. Join us for a fun family adventure as we bring this rich medical heritage to life with exhibitions, stories and drama.

We’ll be transforming our College Hall into an exciting exhibition space – Come along and discover the beginnings of antiseptic surgery, take a peek inside an apothecary’s cabinet, hear the amazing story behind a 19th century surgical kit and find out about the marvellous medical achievements of Glasgow.

Some famous faces will also be making an appearance – Meet Lord Lister, Sir William Macewen, nurse Rebecca Strong, and the surgeon who founded our College, Maister Peter Lowe. You might even bump into King James VI (just don’t get him started on the evils of tobacco!).

Booking Details: No booking required

Contact Info –
Website: http://www.festivalofmuseums.co.uk/glasgows-marvellous-medicine/
Telephone: 0141 221 6072


Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow, Glasgow


Little Grover’s Family Craft Session

09/05/2016 (10:00 AM – 11:30 AM)

little grovners

Our Little Grover’s group for parents/carers and under 5s regularly meet during term time on Monday mornings. For Voluntary Arts week we are having an artist come in and help us get crafty for the morning! All under 5s welcome with their parents/carers. New faces always welcome. Please make sure children have old clothing on.

Booking Details: No booking is required, just turn up

Contact Info –
Website: www.bethanychristiantrust.com
Facebook: The Grove in Possil
Telephone: 01413363239


The Grove, Glasgow

The organisers would love to hear from you! Follow the below instructions on how to upload a photo and tag yourself in the action…

loveto portrait instructions lisa edit

…and finally some words from the organisers.

Cassandra Barron, Development Officer at Voluntary Arts Scotland said: “We often hear from people who are completely unaware of the cultural groups that meet on their doorstep each week, or who may be apprehensive about going along for the first time. Voluntary Arts Week shines a spotlight on all this activity, inviting people to ‘put a creative date in their diary’ and discover the health and wellbeing benefits that go hand-in-hand with taking part – from the sense of satisfaction that comes with mastering a new skill, to the joy of being part of something and sharing your creativity with others.”

The Voluntary Arts Week website offers practical advice to participating groups, including guidance on how to write a press release and engage people on social media. Event toolkits have been developed to help groups take part in nationwide events such as the Woollen Woods, Flashmob, CraftBomb or to hold a ‘Come and Sing’ / ‘Come and Play’ day, which is being promoted by Making Music UK. The toolkits include examples, guidance on planning, organising, implementing and publicising the project as well as links to additional useful resources.

Robin Simpson, Voluntary Arts Chief Executive said: “Voluntary Arts Week has become an annual nationwide highlight in the calendar, showcasing the amazing range and scale of creative cultural activities organised by local volunteers all year round. It’s a truly open opportunity for every local voluntary arts group to raise its profile, demonstrate its creativity and attract new members.”

Debbie Lye, Chief Executive of Spirit of 2012 said: “At Spirit of 2012, we’re absolutely committed to helping the voluntary arts sector grow and develop. Voluntary Arts Week is always a great opportunity for people to get along to the huge number of events happening in communities across the UK, and this year is no exception. Local arts groups are a great way to get out, meet people and feel better – and I hope as many people as possible join in by putting a creative date in their diary and checking out what their local community groups are up to.”


If you would like your community group, activity or business to have a feature article please get in touch with Lisa at lisacraigphoto@googlemail.com
tel; 07903152283.
For those interested I also have an independent blog if you wish to check it out;
and my photo website;




Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s