“It was like going to another world – like Narnia. It was great to talk about our emotions. That’s the part I really remember.”
Residential Participant, 2017
For the last three years, the LIFEbeat core team were lucky enough to be based in an office at Kensington Aldridge Academy, where we offered art enrichment programmes to students and occasional Creative Practice trainings for teaching staff. We loved being part of the KAA community during these years.
Sadly, on June 14th 2017, the school was impacted by the fire at neighbouring Grenfell Tower, leaving students and staff displaced overnight.
KAA, whose motto is “Intrepidus” demonstrated huge resolve, and led by David Benson did an incredible job of creating a brand new, temporary school building – one of the fastest school buildings ever built in the UK.
This autumn, KAA and LIFEbeat decided to collaborate to deliver a bespoke residential program for students affected by Grenfell over the autumn half-term. We welcomed a group of students to Stanford Hall for a fantastic 5-day program where students engaged in creative activities, exploring matters of the heart; made films; played in tree houses and ran around outside on the land, harvesting vegetables, carving pumpkins and taking candlelit walks. The KAA students, with the guidance of Assistant Principal Laurence Kavanagh, delivered an incredible youth-led day, debating issues relating to Climate Change, Social Media and Education and facilitated creative role-plays to explore the depths of interpersonal relationships. The students were a credit to the school and an inspiration to us all. This residential has cemented our deep links with the KAA community and, whilst we are no longer based at the school, we can’t wait to strengthen the partnership in 2018.
Following the displacement from Kensington Aldridge Academy’s Latimer Road building, LIFEbeat were lucky enough to be offered office space within the offices Brown Rudnick over the summer and have now found a more permanent base thanks to the generosity of 3 Space in Bermondsey.