Story: Threading Tales Together

Reading about the Valuable and Vulnerable project on Community Catalysts’ website sparked an idea for a storytelling project that now involves people and funding from Moseley Community Development Trust, Moseley Road Baths, Brum Recovery, and Community Catalysts.

Building on relationships made and strengthened since the first lockdown with local people shielding, their families and friends, and volunteers supporting people, Threading Tales Together explores themes of identity and life before Covid 19; as well as the skills, personalities, and experiences that make a person valuable.

Collected in March and April 2021, stories are being sculpted through a set of questions ‘About Me’, and shared however the storyteller chooses: by email, written or drawn, letters, poems, telephone, Zoom calls, or on walks outdoors with another person. Bilingual volunteers can help as needed – the questions are there to help someone find a theme or idea that lights them up to share their story.

In May, the words and ideas in the stories will be explored with a range of artists, including a photographer, textile artists, an illustrator, and poets. Storytellers can choose whether to share in this creative process – which might involve being photographed at home (through the window or just outside the home); cross-stitching some of their own words; taking part in Hip Hop workshops; writing a poem; or having an artist illustrate or cross stitch their work on their behalf

Artwork and stories will then form a public exhibition that will begin at Moseley Road Baths before moving on to other locations across the Hall Green Constituency in Birmingham, including being part of Moseley Festival in July. There are plans to make a video of the first exhibition, at Moseley Road Baths, so anyone cautious about returning to public events after shielding can still see, from their own home, how they and everyone else involved has contributed to this community event.

After July, there are plans in progress for young people’s art project The GAP to take this forward, creating theatre based on the poems, images, and stories. Further details about all these different elements are on Threading Tales Together’s Facebook page – https://www.facebook.com/Threadingtalestogether.