Children take Centre Stage at the National Arts Festival in Grahamstown
2015-07-11 00:00:00.0

For families attending the National Arts Festival in Grahamstown, the Children's Arts Festival (CAF), which runs concurrently from 2 -11 July 2015, offers a highly popular creative arts experience for young children.

Giving parents and caregivers the opportunity to introduce young people aged six to 13 to the arts in a child-friendly way, the CAF offers three programmes tailored to different age groups. Parents can drop their children off in the morning for a fully supervised day of arts activities, including drama, dance, craft and painting, along with visits to a number of festival productions and exhibitions aimed at younger audiences.  All programmes change daily and are supervised by skilled and professional artists, many of whom are drawn from the main festival.

Mindful that childen at different ages have very different interests and needs, the three festival programmes are: the Mini Festival for pre-primary children aged four to six, the Day Programme for older children aged seven to 13 and a schools programme aimed at Grade 7s who board at the festival. Children's Arts Festival Director, Cindy Renard said, "The Children's Arts Festival believes that art, in all its forms, plays an valuable role in a child's development.  It has been an honour to have Standard Bank see this vision and work alongside us in helping children release the artist within each one of them."  

For Standard Bank, which has been supporting the CAF for 22 years, the festival is a natural extension of their wider support of the arts. Commented Jenny Pheiffer, Head  of Group Brand& Sponsorships at Standard Bank, "We value the opportunity to introduce children to all art forms in an exciting, interactive and safe environment, which we hope will enable them to develop an ongoing relationship with and love for the arts."

A proportion of the sponsorship received for the CAF is used for the benefit of less privileged children, so they can attend all the activities on offer. In 2015, 20 pre-primary children will be able to attend the mini festival, 120 learners will enjoy two days on the CAF day programme and 60 children will take part in the boarding programme, drawn from the wider Grahamstown community.

The programmes:

The Mini Festival is specially designed for pre-primary children aged four to six, who can attend for one or all 10 days. Cost is R200 per child for a full day or R100 per child for a half day, with both morning and afternoon sessions on offer.

The Day Programme caters for children aged seven to 13 and costs R310 per child per full day. Due to the popularity of the programmes, booking for both is essential.

The Boarding Programme is ideal for school cultural tours, with learners boarding for four days of supervised arts activities. This programme is already sold out for 2015.

For more information go to www.childrensartsfestival.co.za

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