Letters of Solidarity

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Materials sent out to 500 families via schools and food banks during the pandemic to prompt them to write down their experiences.
Photo by Richard Bromhall.

By March 2020, the coronavirus pandemic had caused major disruption to everyday life. People were stuck at home, football stadiums and theatres were shut, birdsong could be heard in city centres again. Everybody rushed to process what was going on, amid the cultural sector's lurch towards survival and, later, recovery.

Out of the crisis came Letters of Solidarity. Nottingham UNESCO City of Literature fundraised a grant for a small project that I produced with young people in Nottingham and Nottinghamshire. The project worked with school and colleges, community centres, and food banks to engage young people to write a letter about their experience of the pandemic. I worked with the novelist Eve Makis to design a pack for young people in communities who did not have access to technology. I also worked with Eve to edit an anthology of letters and I recruited a team of young editors to support the editorial process; the anthology was published by the Emma Press in 2021. I commissioned professional writers to deliver 3 online workshops over the summer.

A digital version of the anthology is available to read below.