Telling a Different Story Is a creative writing programme aimed at individuals belonging to minority and disadvantaged groups in the UK.
The underpinning principles of the programme are creativity, opportunity, tolerance, understanding and mutual respect.
The programme works with individuals and groups from across a wide range of minority and protected groups in the UK including racial, religious and ethnic minorities, the physically disabled, the LGBTQ community and the aged, as well as groups such as the homeless, ex-prisoners and ex-service personnel.
The programme works on three levels:
(i) CREATIVE SKILLS. As a creative writing skills programme offering taught classes in writing fiction and script writing to those least able to access such training through mainstream education.
(ii) EXPRESSION. By giving individuals from minority communities the tools to creatively express their unique experiences in a form accessible to others.
(iii) UNDERSTANDING. By creating a ‘community of diversity’ the programme encourages empathetic understanding between individuals and across different groups which emphasises our common humanity.
The programme runs across 10 x 3-hour weekly taught classes during which each student develops a short story or a short film based on or inspired by their own unique experiences.
Each student is supported by the group but also receives individual feedback and guidance from an experienced tutor encouraging them to create the very best story they are capable of.
The programme can be taken as an introduction to story for those interested in pursuing creative writing professionally or as a hobby but it also works as a way for individuals and minority groups to organise their thoughts and give meaning to their experience.