FEAR//LESS Project, YMCA Downslink Group
FEAR//LESS has delivered 2 interactive community-based exhibitions with the theme of masculinity and mental health, which saw over 700 children, young people, families and professionals visit and engage with the work. The project was planned, delivered and evaluated by a diverse team of over 25 Right Here ‘Project Champions’ – aged 16 – 25 years.
FEAR//LESS hoped to raise awareness around young men’s mental health and wellbeing, through starting conversations around gender, identity, emotional literacy, body image and more and targeting young men who might be less informed and/or less interested in standard engagement methods. The project worked with an extensive range of community partners, schools and colleges and actively engaged with children, young people and their families from a range of communities, including LGBT, BME, and from a range of socio-economic backgrounds and holding different faiths/beliefs.
To encourage conversations with boys and young men, the work was directed into their environments and spaces using creative and innovative methods as agreed by the Project Champions. The exhibitions were hosted in Whitehawk Football Club (reaching older men, as well as families with younger aged children), and Brighton Metropolitan College (reaching the public as well as students at the college). The exhibitions showcased a welcoming and inclusive approach that reflected diversity in artists submitting work, and pieces presented including visual art, spoken word, music and dance. This approach attracted a very diverse audience to attend and engage with the project.
Over 200 forms of feedback were gathered, and they were overwhelmingly positive; the average rating for attendees at the events was 5/5 and 68% of survey respondents said the events had made them ‘think differently’ about these issues. Millions of people heard the FEAR//LESS message through our media work, including the South East BBC news and radio, local newspapers, and social media