by Anna Szlendak

Today we are talking with Kay Nicholls, who is an AYCH ambassador in Plymouth College of Art.

 You took part in an incubation process.  How did it look?

For me as a mature student it was really nice to participate with younger students. I think that is was a bit unfortunate because of my age I wasn´t able to participate in the exchange abroad, but apart from that I can’t prize the whole course enough. Workshops we did where really important, we had an opportunity to speak to specialized people, we also had an opportunity to work in groups, to help and assist each other and I think the best thing is to have all this information in one space.

So, what did you do exactly through your incubation programme?

Through the incubation programme I settled for social enterprise company for predominately recycling household textiles.  I´ve been holding a workshops for what we called in UK hard to reach communities, so that are people on low incomes, low-wage families,  that could be single parent or single people in general who for some reason don´t have good disposable income. With local council we discuss in that moment possibility of run a workshop to encourage the recycling, promote circular economy. Hopefully each person will learn skills which may help them to save money. With my skills I can show them how to prolong lives of their clothes. So I start with basics, get them to know how to use sewing machine, to control a power of the sewing machine and take them forward with projects and if this is that what they want to do. It is like an open dialog. I go with sewing machines, I talked to them, introduce myself and tell them what I hope to do with them, then I asked them for any tipe of comments, they always do. Then I have this positive or negative feedback and I tell them how important it is to express their thoughts, even if there is something that I don´t like, because in that way I can improve that or think of alternative way to help them to learn.

What does being an ambassador mean to you?

For me I become an ambassador so I can help any potential people who wants to go to the programme to have them understanding that it´s a working progress, it´s a group as well as singular so you can go to do things on your own, it´s up to you. By speaking with people, networking and sharing ideas and concepts they may have an addition to their ideas. As an ambassador I would like to share a potential of the programme. I hope some of the younger students will get some tips from my experience.

How would you describe AYCH programme?

I think this is invaluable which for me is more than important, because of different elements which are in different countries. A connection between different countries through creative jams and different visits, it is not  only opportunity to share experiences of individuals but it is a network, you built of that an ability, a network of contacts. Through that you also learn about other cultures and get different experiences in various countries.


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