Dear friends, 

What a jam-packed start to 2023 it’s been!
 I hope you are doing well and feeling excited about the fast-approaching Spring time! 

If you were able to take a break over half term, I wish you a warm welcome back. 

January and February have been a busy time for us at Eastside; we’ve welcomed five new team members, reached more than 1600 young people in our Spoken Word Poetry workshops, and have been busy planning our upcoming Fundraising Gala, April Foolery. 

On Saturday we held our annual BFI Academy Screening event at the Rich Mix Arts Centre in Shoreditch. The event saw an afternoon of short films produced by our talented 2023 BFI FIlm Academy Graduates, and a chance to celebrate the start of their careers in film.⁠

You can watch this year’s short films by our aspiring young filmmakers following the links below. Congratulations to all of you!

A String of Zeros and Ones
5K a day
Office Space

We’ve been hard at work securing a star studded line up for our first ever West End Fundraising Gala, April Foolery. 

The evening promises to be a raucous evening of comedy and jazz in London’s fantastic Criterion Theatre. Hosted by Hugh Dennis, and featuring Simon Brodkin alongside a galaxy of stars from Mock the Week and Live at the Apollo, plus live music from our incredible house band, the National Youth Jazz Orchestra.  April Foolery is a night you are not going to want to miss. 

100% of the proceeds go to Eastside’s wonderful charitable activities

Secure your April Foolery tickets before it’s too late, here.

Our Spoken Word Power workshops got underway with great success last month, with the students across the country preparing to showcase their poems at the regional sharing events happening throughout March. The London event will be held in The Criterion Theatre on March 14th, giving the students a chance to perform for an audience on a West End Theatre stage.

There’s still a chance to get involved, and allow your students to become published poets in our 2023 Spoken Word Anthology. 

Find out more about our 4 Steps to the Open Call here. 


                                ‘I like being creative because it makes me feel special’

             ‘Whenever I’m being creative I feel happy because I can express myself’

            – Year 5 participant feedback


We’ve welcomed five new team members so far this year. We’re so excited to see our team expanding, allowing us to extend our reach to help even more young people nationwide. 

Lizzie is our Creative Learning Project Support. She is currently producing our Spoken Word Power London Regional Sharing Event and coordinating our World Book Day workshops.

Marine is our Creative Learning Project Support Coordinator for Eastside’s Artist in Residence programme. She is currently working towards matching 14 schools in London with an Eastside artist for a 6 week residency in drama, animation or spoken word/poetry.  

Kate is our new Marketing and Communications Coordinator, looking after all things Press, Communications, Marketing, PR, Social Media, and Digital Marketing. 

And finally, Maggie and Diya, are our interns from the King’s Civic Leadership Academy programme. They’re supporting us in designing the corporate campaign for our upcoming ‘Try-Art-Lon’ fundraiser, as well as assisting on our social media strategy and research to expand our reach to the correct demographic. 

A warm to everyone who’s joined us so far in 2023, we’re excited to have you on board! 

Expanding our team even further, we’re currently recruiting a new Schools Engagement Coordinator to help drive the expansion of our Schools programmes, help us meet ambitious goals and make the Eastside brand locally and nationally recognised. 

The deadline to apply is at the end of this week (Friday 24th Feb), so if you or someone you know might be interested in this role, please spread the word! 

Find out more about the role, as well as how to apply here

Our Creative Schools programme in partnership with the East London Cultural Education Alliance has been awarded a grant from the Westfield East Bank Creative Futures Fund by the Foundation for Future London and retailer Westfield Stratford City. This fund will enable us to support the development of creative practice for schools in seven East London Boroughs.


If you are a school/college based in Barking and Dagenham, Hackney, Havering, Newham, Redbridge, Tower Hamlets, or Waltham Forest do sign up to our free membership and gain access to opportunities for your students, events, and CPD for the next 12 months.

With a promising start to the year under our belts, here’s what’s coming up next; 

2nd March – World Book Day 

14th March  – Spoken Word Power London Sharing Event 

21st March – World Poetry Day

24th April – April Foolery 


Thank you all for your ongoing support for Eastside – all of your donations and encouragement help us keep moving forward and growing.

Matt and the Eastside team