Women from Greater Manchester were given back stage access to a local theatre to help celebrate International Women’s Day 2018.  

Oldham Coliseum Theatre opened its doors to tenants from Tameside, Oldham, Bury and Manchester for a day of activities and guest talks from actress Isabel Ford.

Isabel is a local actress and Coliseum favourite. She is currently in rehearsals for the Coliseum’s production of Whisky Galore and has previously appeared in Coliseum shows including most recently Hard Times, Spring and Port Wine and Brassed Off. She was also in the feature film, Nativity 2.

The New Charter Homes and Aksa Homes residents were treated like VIPs with a craft session to recreate the International Women’s Day logo to create the concept of women coming together. The women were also treated to a Henna session.

The focus of this year’s International Women’s Day (IWD 2018) is #PressforProgress and it calls on people to take action to strive for gender parity.

Housing associations New Charter Homes and Aksa Homes have developed a partnership with Oldham Coliseum Theatre and run regular projects with tenants to help them build their confidence, employability and health and wellbeing.

The partnership also encourages tenants and families to try something new while experiencing different cultures.

Emma Wilson, New Charter’s Executive Director of Neighbourhoods said: “Our theatre project works with tenants of all ages and genders but this event was about celebrating and empowering women from our communities to go out there and try something new.

“A lot of people we work with are often held back by low self-esteem and, through the theatre, we hope to give them the skills and confidence they need to improve their lives.”

Kevin Shaw, Chief Executive & Artistic Director of Oldham Coliseum Theatre commented: “We’re thrilled to host our third annual International Women’s Day Event with Aksa Homes and New Charter Homes. The Coliseum is a theatre for everyone, but for this special occasion it’s the women of our local communities who take centre stage.”

If you’re a New Charter Homes or Aksa Homes tenant who is interested in getting involved in projects with Oldham Coliseum Theatre, contact Janet Hall on 0161 331 2625 / janet.hall@newcharter.co.uk