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Sandwell becomes first Youth Offending Service to receive Artsmark Award

Sandwell becomes first Youth Offending Service to receive Artsmark Award

Sandwell Youth Offending Service (YOS) has become the first YOS in the country to be awarded a prestigious Artsmark Award.

Staff at Sandwell YOS have spent the last 12 months dramatically improving its use of arts and culture to work more creatively with young people involved with its service. The¬†Artsmark Award – the only creative quality standard for schools and education settings and accredited by Arts Council England – recognises the tangible impact of the YOS’ work and its developing expertise.

On receiving the award, YOS Manager Michael Botham said:

We’re really pleased of achieving our award, which is a confirmation of the hard work our team has put into developing our offer of a more creative way of working with young people. We’ve been really well supported by our YOS Management Board and a range of partners, and are grateful to Arts Connect, the Youth Justice Board and the National Criminal Justice Arts Alliance for their support and encouragement.

The work of the YOS has recently been evaluated by Professor Laura Caulfield and her team at the Institute of Community Research and Development at the University of Wolverhampton, with promising early results around engagement.

The YOS aims to now continue to build on the offer and continue to learn, and is very keen on connecting with local artists to strengthen links to the community.

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Image courtesy of Michael Botham, Sandwell Children’s Trust