Lead: Transforming Leadership

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Starting in January 2020, Access All Areas partnering with Disability Arts Online and Manchester Met University will develop ‘Lead’ – a bespoke career development program and coaching culture for potential learning disabled leaders.

Our aim is to radically challenge ideas about who can lead across the Arts and demonstrate the significant impact learning disabled leaders can have in driving greater accessibility in the sector.

Our new leadership programme will enable seven aspiring learning disabled leaders to take on positions across all aspects of theatre-making including becoming theatre directors, being the voice of our social media platforms and co-chairs of trustee boards.

We will work in partnership with leading theatre venues to develop placements for our aspiring leaders which will in turn challenge inaccessible practice and bring vital new perspectives to the Arts and leadership.

Trish Wheatley, CEO of Disability Arts Online, said:

“Everyone at Disability Arts Online is so excited about this project. It will help us to fulfill our long-term ambition of supporting learning disabled people in the arts and cultural sector to have a voice, tell their story and be part of the conversation about arts and culture and the role it has in shaping society. We’re really looking forward to working with our partners Access All Areas, Lucy Burke (University of Manchester) and experienced leadership coach Sarah Pickthall.”

Congratulations to our friends Graeae Theatre Company who along with ourselves and Shape have also received Transforming Leadership funding for leadership development programmes, which will support D/deaf and disabled cultural leaders at all stages of their careers.

We are very thankful to the Arts Council and are keen to get started. Get ready for a shake up in the Arts, your new leaders are raring to go.