Our ethos and work
The Geraldine Connor Foundation has three main aims:
- To continue the work and vision of Geraldine Connor in advancing the development and education of individuals in the arts and culture, and thereby developing professional and life skills, encouraging and nurturing new work and talent, and encouraging and promoting equality, diversity, empowerment and inclusion in society through the Arts
- To provide opportunities in the Arts that might not otherwise be available for talented individuals
- To advance the development of young people looking for guidance in the performing arts, in particular (but not exclusively) by giving them the opportunity to experience, participate and learn from projects engaging with Caribbean culture through the performing arts.
As an arts organisation, we deliver these core objectives through creative projects that enrich people’s lives either through participation or as audience. We do this by enabling participants to identify and develop their own individual creative potential by engaging with professional arts activity. We believe that, as well as developing specific creative skills; this engagement has a positive influence on people’s wellbeing and confidence. We are interested in providing a number of pathways into creative practice across a variety of disciplines that may progress into further and higher education, and into professional practice.
We are an organisation committed to achieving and promoting excellence in the arts. We value creativity as a fundamental and essential part of human life and society, believing everyone should have the opportunity to engage with or experience artistic practice across the widest possible spectrum of art forms. GCF has grown out of a vibrant, diverse region and been inspired by art forms from a number of cultures, inspired by Geraldine Connor’s own work. We value these art forms as equally interesting and distinctive. We also value every individual, seeing people as people regarding of their background, identity, education, social status or anything else.
Core to our creative work is the fusion of culturally significant art forms to create unique performance and events. We are particularly interested in non-professionals engaging with professional practitioners and creative work that explores unknown or under appreciated artists or art form. We aim to bring people from a diverse range of backgrounds and social experiences together as we believe that this contributes to the breaking down of perceived barriers between communities and enriches the individuals’ experience by working with others who have difference experiences from their own. GCF recognises that individuals from any community may face barriers to participation or be underrepresented in contemporary arts practice. We aim to work with groups that reflect the communities of West Yorkshire and beyond; we do not focus on working with any one community, although we focus our resources on reaching those people who are not currently engaging with participatory arts.