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‘We don’t help people. We make a place for them to help themselves’

Angela Watt founded Resonate Together arts centre in Alloa, after people were fed up with being labelled in ways they didn’t choose.

Angela photo

“We’re an anarchist community. Nothing like us anywhere else. It has to be about choice – I can’t say we’re going to talk about loss. We create a daft, soft, safe space. It might look chaotic and crazy but the community that we built don’t want to meet because they have a label. They want to knit.

We have people coming for seven or eight years before they open up about their problems. We were asked can we do a 12 week course to help someone get employable? No, because we don’t know what that person’s own timetable is.

We don’t help types of people. Types of people is a difficult expression. At any moment in anyone’s life they may feel in a particular way. We don’t help people, we make a place for them to help themselves.

There is no evidence or outcome to our work. We call it winging it. I know that 36 people have told me that Resonate Together has helped save their life, but I also know three we lost and they’re the ones that stick with me. Art is great because it isn’t right or wrong. Even in football there’s winners and losers.

You need patience and positivity so that whatever goes wrong you work through it. We are trying to build confidence in that it’s OK not to have the answers and OK to have confidence in your own voice.”

No-one knows who’s driving the economy, the infrastructure is cracked, intelligent kids are encouraged to leave. It’s sad. There is no energy. People need to heal.”

To find out more about Resonate Together, click here.