Creating bonds, lino-prints and turning weaknesses into strengths – Read about Hamida and Shaz’s experiences in their blogs


Hamida’s Blog

“Her great thinking and my hands were able to create beautiful and colourful prints”

Hi, my name is Hamida and I started working here at Magic Me in May and have been running a project alongside Jan, Shaz and Catherine (Senior Project Manager).

Our project brings together the younger adult generation of East London with the older generation at Coopers Court, an extra care scheme in Mile End. Through the project, the visiting adults create bonds and relationships with the residents of Coopers Court through creative art activities. Magic Me staff are working very closely with two artists, Sue Mayo, and Mia Harris, who are exceptionally talented in the work they create. Sue and Mia are leading weekly sessions at Coopers Court, working with participants to create visual art such as collages and Lino-print designs. We are also working very closely with staff from Coopers Court to ensure that we are meeting the needs of the residents to make things go smoothly. At the completion of the project, which will be at the end of September, we plan to host a celebration event where the visiting adults and residents can exhibit their art to invited guests. Working with Sue and Mia, project participants are creating artwork to decorate a new permanent archway in Coopers Courts’ garden, which will be big enough to fit wheelchairs and a few people at a time. The arch will display their work and will be weather friendly.

My experience as a trainee has been amazing, especially working with the other two trainees, who are exceptional at the work they create. I feel very lucky to have had the chance to experience working at Magic Me and meeting new people. For example, last week, we had an intergenerational session and were working on making Lino-print designs based on the theme ‘Welcome’. I was working directly with one of the residents who gave the idea of an open door to perceive the feeling of being welcomed. Her great thinking and my hands were able to create beautiful and colourful prints onto pieces of fabric. These fabrics will then be stretched over metal spheres and placed onto the archway along with their collage welcome flags.”

Shaz’s Blog

“Being able to see how much their work impacts a lot of people in the community, makes the work extra rewarding”

Hello, I’m Shaz!

During my time here, I have had the pleasure of meeting all the Magic Me staff and getting a better understanding of their roles which has given me a great insight into how a successful charity is run. Being able to see how much their work impacts a lot of people in the community, makes the work extra rewarding. I was inspired and privileged to be able to experience this opportunity as the work that they do CHANGES LIVES, including mine in the short time I have been here.

Since May, I have attended weekly workshops with training facilitator Lewis and have met up with professional artists to plan and deliver our intergenerational project at Coopers Court. I have learned new skills such as budgeting, strategising a plan, holding a meeting, coordinating the planning with the artists and colleagues, recruiting young adults and many more. These skills are really helpful and have been transferrable into my daily life.

At Magic Me, I have learned to overcome barriers with the support of my colleagues and staff which has helped me turn my weaknesses into strengths. When I first started, the biggest thing I struggled with was trying to talk and relate with older people as I could not connect with them instantly. In time, with the workshops, support from team members and being at Coopers Court, I learned and practised the skills of how to better communicate with older people.

I have extremely enjoyed all my time with everyone at Magic Me. I have made great relationships with the staff and residents of Coopers Court and have had some memorable moments that were so special to me. I have also created an amazing relationship with both the artists that we chose for our project, Sue and Mia who have been fantastic and very creative.

Coopers Court

Our goal for this project was to create an intergenerational workshop and event for the residents at Coopers Court (Sanctuary Care Home) in Mile End. We have been leading the project with experienced artists, Sue and Mia and I have been fortunate enough to be also working alongside my exceptional colleagues:  Jan, Hamida and Catherine (Senior Project Manager). We are currently overseeing 10 young adults in the project, connecting them with the residents at Coopers Court. The residents have loved interacting with the young adults, and it is great to see everyone embracing their creativity through the arts. We have had 6 successful workshops so far which have focused on the theme of ‘Welcome’ and will be hosting a celebration and final event to showcase the groups’ individual artwork next week.

I am super excited for the event and looking forward to seeing everyone and our artworks come together. We will also be revealing the colourful and creative archway that we have built for the residents of Coopers Court, I am just very excited to see our theme “Welcome” come to life!