by Author nicbriggs

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My first 6 months on the Plugin Project by Madeline Kirby (Youth Assistant Project Coordinator on Quench Arts’ Plugin project)

When offered the role of Youth Assistant Project Coordinator to work on Quench Arts' Plugin Project, I was ecstatic. The project was exactly the kind of thing I wanted to be involved in, and I was just so impressed with how Quench Arts makes such a positive difference in our community that I really wanted to be a part of it. It had been half a year since I'd graduated from University and I was building my profile as a professional harpist and harp teacher whilst working part-time as an administrator for another music organisation and as a support worker. I wanted to progress in arts admin, and Quench Arts have given me exactly the platform to allow me to do so and to learn a lot of things along the way.


Starting in February, I was only just getting the hang of what my weekly tasks were, when COVID-19 struck and threw a spanner into the works for the project which fundamentally is delivered face to face. Nonetheless, Quench Arts were really accommodating and made it possible for me to work from home, and the project team created videos and worksheets for project participants which I had the joy of reading through and sending to each setting. It hasn't been ideal for the participants, but it is good to know that we can have some kind of impact despite not being able to deliver the project as planned.


I have also spent my time during the last few months with Quench Arts doing a level 3 diploma in Project Management. It was a wonderful opportunity for me to receive a qualification completely different to my musical qualifications and my degree in Modern Languages and Music. The diploma, which was done entirely online, has given me skills to manage projects - something that will definitely be useful in the future! I have also done NSPCC Child Protection Training and Autism Awareness Training. The training was a really valuable way of consolidating and expanding my knowledge of child protection and autism, topics which I had touched upon in my role as support worker and with educational work that I have done.


I hope that in the next 6-12 months we will be able to deliver the project safely face to face and that I will be able to put more of my training into practice and help make a difference to the lives of young people.