Paisley Photographs, official Paisley website containing Photographs of Paisley, Renfrewshire, Scotland with some superb videos of Paisley and the town.

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Artists greet Spree festival goers with colourful large scale art project

Local artists are putting their own stamp on the Spree Festival with a project to decorate the famous Spiegeltent venue.

Sign writers and a graffiti artist are working on a series of hoardings at County Square.

Artists Rachael Millar and Karina Duncan spruce up The Spree with their amazing hand painted signs around the famous Speigletent Paisley Spree 14th October 2017

Rachel Millar, whose signage work has been championed by Paisley star Paolo Nutini , says  it’s one of the biggest scale projects she’s ever worked on.

Rachel, who also created one of the art works which fronted the official documents for the Paisley 2021 UK City of Culture bid, said: “We’ve made great progress.

“The sheer scale of it was quite hard and it was tricky to put up the big massive bits of paper but we hope people will love the end result.”

This year’s artwork was inspired by circus poster from the 1920s and 1930s and the baroque artwork of the wood and canvas Spiegeltent itself.

Festival goers are being greeted by a seven metre sign reading  ‘Welcome to the Spree’ with another massive hoarding is covered in slogans.

Rachel is assisted by fellow sign writers Karina Duncan and Ciaran Globel, while graffiti artist Mark Worst is also decorating another of the hoardings in his signature style.

Mark is behind a series of murals across the town including a Kingfisher at Johnston Street and one of iconic music stars on the side of Paisley rock bar The Bungalow

Fellow artist Kevin Cantwell has also created smaller scale artworks on the High Street and at the Little Book Transfer at Gilmour Street Station.

The artists created the works to mark Paisley’s national festival, which runs until Tuesday October 24.

It takes place as part of the push for the town’s bid to be named the UK City of Culture 2021.

This year features some of the biggest names in the Scottish worlds of entertainment, music and comedy, including a sold-out homecoming show from Paolo Nutini at Paisley Abbey on Friday.

Other acts on the bill include James Grant at Paisley Abbey and singer songwriter Dougie MacLean.

Paisley 2021 Bid Director Jean Cameron said: “It’s wonderful to attract such big names from the national stage to the Spree Festival  as we bid to be UK City of Culture 2021 but it’s also important to give a platform to local artists and creatives too.”

The Spree is taking place in partnership with local bar Burger and Keg and Fosters, who will be programming additional acts in the Burger and Keg Live Tent in Abbey Close during the festival. More info can be found at burgerandkeg.co.uk.

The festival is also supported by EventScotland, part of VisitScotland’s Events Directorate, and the British Council.

Tickets and info are available from www.thespree.co.uk and from the box office on 0300 300 1210.

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Frightened Rabbit with the Royal Scottish National Orchestra, at Paisley Abbey

Photographs from Frightened Rabbit’s sold out concert with the Royal Scottish National Orchestra at Paisley Abbey, part of Paisley’s National Festival, The Spree.

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PIRATES ARE BACK!

Pirates were delighted to get their season off to a flying start at the weekend with two good wins.  On Saturday they travelled to North Ayr, taming the Wild with a 7-0 win.  

Their first home game on Sunday resulted in a 7-1 win against Kilmarnock Storm.

Paisley Pirates defeat Kilmarnock Storm 7-1 at Braehead on ,15 October , Picture: Al Goold (www.algooldphoto.com)

Coach Adam Walker said “It was really pleasing to get off to a good start last weekend.  We expected a test in both games, however, the team responded well to the challenge and grew in confidence as the weekend went on.  Obviously there is a long way to go and I think we had one or two tired bodies on Sunday in the latter stages, but that is to be expected with us not being game sharp. Fitness will improve as we work our way through the games.  We haven’t had the opportunity to play any pre season games and starting late means we will be a little behind for the first three or four games.  Both North Ayrshire Wild and Kilmarnock Storm were playing there seventh game against us, but I thought we coped well and were comfortable for long spells in each.  A real positive for the team is that every line had scoring at the weekend, which will enable us to rely on everybody to make an offensive contribution.  Everyone has a role on the team and we expect our top offensive players to contribute regularly, however, that secondary scoring is also vital if we are to be successful”

 

“This weekend we welcome Dundee Tigers to Braehead and although they haven’t got off to the best start we will go into the game prepared and ready for the challenges they bring.  They have some good players in the team that can pose a threat and we have to respect that.  Hopefully we can get the same support from the fans as we did last week.  They were excellent and the boys really appreciate the support, which inspires everyone to work hard, giving our fans a team to be proud of…”

 

Photograph courtesy of AL GOOLD PHOTO
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Code Red Safety Solutions helps Paisley 2021 with Spectrum Lion

spectrum

Paisley’s leading fire safety instruction company Code Red Safety Solutions has temporarily donated the lion they won the bidding war that was the pride of Paisley ceremony at the Normandy hotel last year with all money going to charity.

spectrum

James McMahon from Code Red Safety Solutions dropped off the lion Spectrum at the Paisley 2021 HQ on the high street today and will allow the lion to be displayed in Paisley Town Hall when the judges from DCMS for the Bid for City of Culture come to town sometime before Decembers big deadline.

The Pride of Paisley was a fantastic success from Paisley First last year in town and people can visit Spectrum in the Bid HQ for now and then in the Town Hall. You can learn more about Code Red by visiting their website www.coderedsafetysolutions.co.uk who are always helping groups in Paisley and are keen for Paisley to win City of Culture

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Ferguslie cooking group backs national poverty campaign

Keen chefs got together in Ferguslie to support Challenge Poverty Week by making their own smoothies.

Held in the Tannahill Centre, the cooking class met with Depute Provost Cathy McEwan ahead of the national poverty campaign to chop up fruit and vegetables and make some spectacular smoothies.

The kitchen equipment was donated by Renfrewshire Council to the cooking class, topping up the funds from the Paisley North Local Area Committee to support the project.

More than a dozen people of all ages attend the cooking class every week, picking up tips on food preparation as well as cooking and freezing meals.

Depute Provost McEwan said: “Tackling inequality that can cause poverty and create barriers to healthy lifestyles and mental health is a key priority for the Council.

“The cooking group in Ferguslie make healthy food together and also spend a couple of hours socialising with one another. It is a fantastic way to feel part of the community as well as learning simple ways to eat healthily.

Maura, who runs the cooking class, said: “The cooking class is good for the people who come along. They look forward to learning more about cooking as well as catching up with their friends and meeting new people.

“The smoothie-making class was tremendous fun as everyone could get involved in making their own specially-blended smoothie to suit their own taste.”

Depute Provost McEwan added: “During Challenge Poverty Week, Renfrewshire will be holding a number of events that members of the public can get involved in and shine a light on how poverty exists and can affect anyone.”

People are asked to get involved in a social media campaign using hashtag #CPW17 by writing their own pledge on poverty onto a piece of paper and taking a selfie to post online.

A special advice event is also running on Thursday 19 October between 10am and 4pm in Johnstone Town Hall for anyone to drop in.

For more information on Challenge Poverty Week, visit www.povertyalliance.org.

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Paisley’s Spree festival launches with Scottish-Indian concert link-up

The town which gave the world the Paisley Pattern is set to celebrate its close links with India by forging a musical friendship as its flagship The Spree arts festival starts tomorrow (FRIDAY).

Paisley is hosting the Spree for the sixth year, with more than 60 shows taking place over 12 days, as the town waits to hear whether it will be the first Scottish place to become UK City of Culture, in 2021.

Headline acts this year include an eagerly-anticipated homecoming charity show from the town’s musical megastar Paolo Nutini in Paisley Abbey (Oct 20), and a unique collaboration between Frightened Rabbit and the Royal Scottish National Orchestra (Oct 16) in the same venue.

And the festival starts tomorrow night with a special Musical Tapestry, celebrating Paisley’s friendship with India through its textile heritage, where three Scottish musicians – piper Ross Ainslie, musician and composer Angus Lyon and singer-songwriter Ross Wilson (aka Blue Rose Code) – team up with Indian counterparts Smita Bellur, Asin Khan Langa and Sawai Khan, for a special collaboration fusing traditional music and instruments from both countries.

The six have just arrived in Scotland after performing the same show last week at the Rajasthan International Folk Festival, with which The Spree has been twinned, thanks to support from the British Council as part of their UK/India Year of Culture 2017.

The Scottish leg will be recorded for BBC Scotland’s Travelling Folk programme and broadcast next Wednesday and is accompanied by a digital tapestry, where school pupils from both countries will work together on an art project to be revealed later in the year.

Some of the participants today met up in the specially-erected Spiegeltent in County Square – which will host tomorrow’s opening concert and the bulk of the Spree action.

Ross Wilson – aka Blue Rose Code – said: “People can expect something genuinely new – we bandy around the terms unique and special but this is a genuine fusion of styles people won’t have heard before.

“As musicians we have been outside our comfort zone but we have learned a lot and really grown together. Last week we performed this show in a 15th-century Indian fort to 3,000 people and the energy was palpable – it couldn’t have been any better.”

Spiegeltent highlights include Yola Carter with Laura Cortese and the Dance Cards (Oct 14), Sharon Shannon with Fara (Oct 15), Dougie MacLean (Oct 18) and Breabach with Kris Drever and Talisk (Oct 20), as well as BBC Radio Scotland’s Janice Forsyth and Vic Galloway shows (Oct 19).

Other musical moments include a Paisley: The Untold Story show with James Grant in Paisley Abbey on Oct 21, while Paisley Arts Centre will host Emma Pollock and RM Hubbert (Oct 15) and a Lost Map Records night hosted by the Pictish Trail (Oct 22).

There will also be two Best of Scottish Comedy nights with the Gilded Balloon, as well as theatre, poetry, film, dance, and a full programme of kids shows during the October school holidays.

Paisley 2021 bid director Jean Cameron said: “The Spree festival is firmly established as a key date in Scotland’s festival calendar and we look forward to welcoming people from across the country for this year’s bill, which is the biggest and best yet, with a range of artforms and some incredible performers

“We are delighted to be welcoming musicians from India to help kick off the packed programme tomorrow night – our UK City of Culture 2021 bid aims to use Paisley’s place as the one-time centre of a global industry to reconnect us to the world and this is a great way to show what that will look like.”

The Spree is taking place in partnership with local bar Burger and Keg and Fosters, who have programmed additional acts in the Burger and Keg Live Tent in Abbey Close during the festival including comedians Rab Florence, Billy Kirkwood and Tom Urie and Janey Godley. More info at burgerandkeg.co.uk

The festival is also accompanied by the Spree For All fringe, which will see gigs taking place in local pubs and venues during The Spree fortnight. More info at thespree.co.uk/spree-for-all

The festival is organised by Renfrewshire Council, programmed by Active Events, and supported by EventScotland, part of VisitScotland’s Events Directorate, and the British Council.

Stuart Turner, Head of EventScotland, said: “We are delighted to be supporting The Spree, and it is exciting to see such a strong programme showcasing Paisley’s cultural and creative vibrancy, especially as they bid for UK City of Culture 2021.

“In particular, we look forward to this year’s opening concert ‘A Musical Tapestry’, which will provide a fantastic platform for exploring the shared heritage and ties between Paisley and Jodhpur, through a line-up of some of Scotland and India’s best folk and traditional music performers.”

Paisley is the only Scottish place to make the final UK City of Culture 2021 shortlist – alongside Coventry, Stoke, Sunderland and Swansea – with the winner to be announced in December.

The bid is part of a wider drive to transform Paisley’s future using its internationally-significant heritage and cultural story, and thriving events programme.

Spree tickets and info are available from www.thespree.co.uk and from the box office on 0300 300 1210.

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24 hour cyclathon

2 bikes, 48 cyclists and a lot of sore legs later, Andrea and Alan Gibson, along with friends Lesley and Mike Gallagher and Stuart and Eve Gibson completed a gruelling cycling challenge at the Houston Inn that raised an incredible £4, 403.10 for St Vincent’s Hospice.

 

The motivation for event organiser Andrea, was the care that her father in law received during his final days at the hospice.

 

Andrea said “We cannot express the gratitude we as a family feel towards the staff at St Vincent’s Hospice. My father in law was very passionate about cycling so the cyclathon seemed like a fitting event to raise money for the hospice.”

 

A total of 48 cyclist took part in the event with 2 stationery bikes outside the Houston Inn from 8:30am – 8:30pm. After the challenge around 200 locals danced the night away and took part in a raffle and competitions to win some fantastic prizes.

Andrea said: “We really appreciate all the companies and businesses that have supported our fundraising, without which, it wouldn’t have been the success that it was.”

 

Laura McDade, fundraiser at St Vincent’s Hospice said “Well done to all 48 cyclists that took part. What a fantastic way to fundraise! We know the preparation that goes into these type of events so we really appreciate the support.”

 

“If you are interested in holding your own fundraising event in aid of St Vincent’s Hospice please contact the fundraising team on 01505705635 or email  info@svh.co.uk

 

Pictured in the hospice community garden

“Vinnie” the hospice mascot and Elaine Grealey, volunteer services manager, receive cheque from cyclathon event organised by Andrea Gibson and friends.

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Hat-trick of wins for Kilbarchan AAC in annual sports awards

COACHES from Kilbarchan Amateur Athletic Club ran out with a hat-trick of wins at the annual Renfrewshire Sports Awards.
Arthur Smith won both the Community Coach of the Year and Dedication to Sport awards along with John Rodger, who lifted the Event Volunteer of 2017 award.

Arthur has been a member of Kilbarchan AAC for more than 50 years and has been coaching young athletes for three decades, including Scottish internationalist, Laura Stark and GB runner, Jemma Reekie.
John has been involved with the club for more than 20 years and has been instrumental in the development of athletics – cross-country, road race and track and field events in Renfrewshire’s schools. He is also heavily involved in organising the popular annual Paisley 10k Race and Fun Run.

Other winners presented with awards at the event,organised by Renfrewshire Lerisure and held at a ceremony in Johnstone Town Hall, were – Development Coach of the Year, Susan Wright, who is head coach of Clyde Judo Club; Young Coach of the Year, Claire Scougall, who coaches Paisley Juniors Netball Club and Volunteer of the Year was won by Joanne McDowall, who has developed sporting activity at Barsail Primary, in Erskine.
Young Volunteer of the Year went to Lusia Steele, who delivers school health days at Barsail Primary and volunteers at the Johnstone Jets cycling club; Disability Coach of the Year is Rachel Killens, who is a disabled athlete herself and coaches swimmers with additional support needs.

And Jack Thomson, a referee at the Basketball Paisley Friday Night Superleague, West Regional Development League and other Scottish League games, won the Technical Official of the Year award.
The Honour Our School Sports Award was given to one student from every local secondary school who has shown commitment to sport. The winners were –
Alan Rice, Linwood High; Amy McCann, Renfrew High; Craig Kennedy, Park Mains High; Eilidh Murphy, Gleniffer High; Franca Paterson, St Andrew’s Academy; Gemma Whyte, St Benedict’s High; John Martin, Johnstone High; Mario Girasoli, Trinity High and Rebecca Telford, from Gryffe High.

A Level Six Award in Higher Sports Leadership was presented to Alan Rice, Calum Findlay, Emma Driver, Heather Fawcett and Laura-Rose Reid.
The special guest at the awards ceremony was Corinne Hutton, from Lochwinnoch who has defied the odds after having had both her hands and legs amputated when she suffered acute pneumonia and septicemia.
Since losing her limbs, Corinne has gone on to set three world records including becoming the first female quadruple amputee to climb Ben Nevis. She has also set up a charity called Finding Your Feet to support families affected by amputation, or limb differences through a range of sporting and social inclusion initiatives.

Corinne took to the stage for a Question and Answer Session with the event host, broadcaster Lorraine Herbison.

Chair of Renfrewshire Leisure, Councillor Lisa Marie Hughes said: “These awards showcase the talent, dedication and commitment of individuals in our community.

“With Paisley’s bid to become UK city of Culture 2021, sport plays a large role in the culture of our community. We have a vibrant and exciting sports network in Renfrewshire, which adds energy and passion to the overall bid.”
The successful event was sponsored by Renfrewshire Council, West College Scotland, Renfrewshire Sports Network, and SportScotland.

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Paisley statues yarn bombed

She was infamous for not being amused but even Queen Victoria would have raised a smile as her statue was one of a string across Paisley to be yarn bombed.

Passers-by stopped in their tracks when they saw the legendary monarch, who stands in Dunn Square, sporting a specially created tartan crinoline skirt and traffic cone crown.

The William Dunn memorial was also dressed and given silver knitted cups to mark the fact it used to be a water fountain.

Robert Tannahill’s statue in Abbey Close also enjoyed a makeover with the town’s famous weaver poet dressed in a knitted scarf with musical notes, waistcoat and gaiters.

A knitted lawn with flowers completed the yarn bombing to mark his catalogue of songs and poems celebrating nature.

The installations are part of the Winter Coats yarn bombing project, where a series of local groups worked with textile artists Ashley Holdsworth and Bex Smith to research historical figures and then create a garment for them.

With the support of the NHS’s Network Services, Capability Scotland, the Phoenix Activity Group, Craft to Recover, Laugh n Craft, the Disability Resource Centre and patients from wards at Dykebar and Leverndale all took part.

Their colourful creations were installed to coincide with the start of Renfrewshire’s contribution to the Scottish Mental Health Arts Festival.

The display of street art also saw statues of Sir Peter and Thomas Coats beside Dunn Square dressed in a Paisley pattern kilt and a waistcoat decorated with thread and ribbon to represent the family’s textiles empire and history.

At the town’s Russell Institute, where local children used to receive their inoculations, some of the infant statues were draped with sock teddy bunting. The cuddly toys were crafted to come with miniature slings and walking sticks in recognition of the institute’s child welfare clinic roots.

The town’s other illustrious textile family weren’t forgotten, with George Clark’s statue given a mortar board in honour of his family’s passion for education.

Renowned ornithologist and poet Alexander Wilson’s statue at Abbey Close was yarn bombed with a bird cage and birds.

Renfrewshire Council Leader Iain Nicolson said: “The project is a fitting contribution to the Scottish Mental Health Arts Festival and shows how the different groups all researched and understood the history of the statues and who they commemorate.

“It’s a great way of shining a light on our unique cultural heritage as we bid to be UK City of Culture for 2021. “

The Winter Coats initiative is part of a wider five year project, Renfrewshire Council’s Paisley Townscape Heritage Conservation Area Regeneration Scheme 2.

It has also received funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund and Historic Environment Scotland and has a total budget of £4.5m.

Ten per cent of the funding is allocated to a Cultural and Heritage programme which aims to engage the community in the architectural and textiles heritage of Paisley.

Lucy Casot, Head of Heritage Lottery Fund Scotland said: “Thanks to funds raised through the National Lottery, a new sense of belief and pride in Paisley’s past is growing. Fun projects like this, rooted in the town’s historic past clearly demonstrate the creative spirit alive today.

“We have invested in many projects across the town which have seen historic buildings restored, communities exploring their heritage and also confirmed our latest commitment with initial support for the transformational plans for Paisley’s museum.”

Michael Easson from Historic Environment Scotland, which partly funded the project, said: “It’s exciting to see an innovative and fun new initiative to engage people across myriad backgrounds with their local built environment.

“I hope this brings a wider awareness to the Renfrewshire Mental Health Arts Festival as well as the Historic Environment Scotland supported Paisley TH.CARS2 scheme.”

The practice of yarn bombing is thought to have started in the US by Texas knitters who wanted to find a creative way to use their leftover and unfinished knitting projects. It’s since been adopted across the globe.

A wider network of groups have also been making scarves to tie onto railings which will be donated to the homeless service in Paisley’s Abercorn Street.

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Pupils supported by their parents heading back to school

An innovative education project is helping Renfrewshire pupils to reach their full potential by inviting their parents to get back into school.

Parents of pupils in three secondary schools – Gryffe, Castlehead and Trinity High – were invited to take part in a pilot of the Parents in Partnership programme between August and October 2016 as part of a series of projects supporting Renfrewshire Council’s ambition to close the poverty related attainment gap.

The pilot project – funded by Renfrewshire Council in association with the Centre for Excellence for Looked After Children in Scotland (CELCIS) at the University of Strathclyde –  assessed how a child’s attainment might relate to parental or carer involvement.

CELCIS, who work with local authorities to make lasting improvements in the wellbeing of children and young people living in and on the edges of care and their families, looked at how the programme made a difference for parents and the benefits it had on pupils, with the results published in the report Parents in Partnership 2016 Evaluation.

Parents, who attended school one morning a week for six weeks, said that the flexible model of the programme meant their unique family circumstances were taken into account and they were supported by the Homelink service, who work with identified pupils and their families to improve achievement and attainment.

One parent explained that attending the sessions helped open the lines of communication, while another said it was now much easier to approach the school to ask for support.

Teachers also found that parents were able to read with their children more often once they realised it only needed to involve fifteen minutes of reading and a chat afterwards.

Renfrewshire Council’s Convener of Education and Children’s Services Policy Board, Councillor Jim Paterson, said: “Renfrewshire is ambitious for our pupils. We want all young people to reach their full potential, regardless of their background.

“Reducing the impact of poverty on attainment is a key priority for the Council and being part of Scottish Government’s Attainment Challenge, supported by the Pupil Equity Fund, is a big deal for Renfrewshire’s children.

“We’ve already seen results from adopting the Renfrewshire Literacy Approach in partnership with the University of Strathclyde, which has seen teachers adapting teaching styles to develop a love of reading in all pupils.

“We know involving parents and carers in school life is a great way to support pupils, with parents encouraging reading at night and that has a knock-on effect to how well the child does at school.

“The report by CELCIS shows good progress on supporting those who need that extra bit of assistance through school and reinforces that parents and teachers are all working together to provide the best opportunities for children.

“High school is an unknown world for parents, so being able to involve them in the school day and encouraging more communication between teachers and parents has been incredibly beneficial.

“Parents have told us that they have benefitted from understanding high school life, felt they could talk to their child more about school and that they had much more confidence in approaching the school for support, while pupils have also felt they have more support at home.

“We will continue to build on the project, responding to the needs of parents and carers as well as the pupils across Renfrewshire schools.”

Linda O’Neill, Education Programme Lead from CELCIS, who developed this approach, said “We know that working with parents and carers in a meaningful way through school has the real potential to support family learning and improve the wellbeing of both children and their parents and carers.  It’s great to see Renfrewshire Council making a commitment to develop real and lasting partnerships between parents, schools and communities though Parents in Partnership”

All secondary schools in Renfrewshire, including the Mary Russell School, run similar parental engagement programmes.

To find out more about the Parents in Partnership programme evaluation, visit www.celcis.org.

Ends

Notes to Editor:

1. Image caption:

Parents from Gryffe and Castlehead high schools with Anne Marie Haddow, Deputy Head at Trinity High School, Chris Anderson, Principal Teacher (attainment) at Gryffe High School, Jim Russ, Education Support Manager at Castlehead High School, Linda O’Neill of CELCIS and Cllr Jim Paterson, Education adn Children’s Services Convener at Renfrewshire Council.

2. To read the full report, visit www.celcis.org/knowledge-bank/search-bank/parents-partnership-programme-evaluation-2017/.

3. Renfrewshire Council Home Link Service aims to help parents engage in supporting their children’s education. Research suggests parental engagement in education makes an important contribution to a child’s educational attainment throughout the school years. This is particularly true for children from disadvantaged backgrounds.

4. In Scotland a child’s socio-economic status is the strongest predictor of educational attainment, which leads to a significant gap in attainment between pupils from the least disadvantaged and those from the most disadvantaged backgrounds (OECD, 2010). Current research indicates that “only parental involvement makes a significant contribution to closing the attainment gap” (JRF, 2014).

5. CELCIS, based at the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow, is committed to making positive and lasting improvements in the wellbeing of Scotland’s children living in and on the edges of care. Taking a multi-agency, collaborative approach towards making lasting change, CELCIS works alongside leaders, managers and practitioners to break down barriers and forge new paths in order to change thinking and ways of working with everyone whose work touches the lives of vulnerable children and families. CELCIS builds on national experience to inform its work in different countries around the world and plays a key role in the work of the University’s Institute for Inspiring Children’s Futures.