I Know I Wish I Will

We are delighted to announce that Grimm & Co are supporting Eastside Education Trust with a huge project to assemble thousands of young people from across England and beyond, to create the world’s longest, youth-led, spoken word poem.

Launching on World Poetry Day, 21st March 2019, the I know, I wish, I will project will culminate in a youth-led, live streamed, 25-hour spoken word marathon on stage at the West End’s Criterion Theatre to celebrate World Poetry Day 21st March 2020.

Grimm & Co are one of five regional delivery partners* spanning Yorkshire, Gloucestershire, Merseyside, Peterborough and Lincolnshire, this project will support and challenge children and young people across England to develop the confidence, knowledge and know how to write and perform their own original poetry in response to the main poem title – I know, I wish, I will.


A newly assembled national network of diverse spoken word artists will work with these young people, helping them articulate what they know about the world, what they wish for in the future and what they will do, to make their dreams come true.  The final event will be hosted by celebrities and will be live streamed to audiences around the world. This exciting project is made possible thanks to the generous support of Arts Council England, The Criterion Theatre, our five expert regional partners and a host of additional

For further information about the programme please visit the project website https://knowwishwill.com/
For general enquiries please contact Eastside on 020 7033 2380 or online@eastside.org.uk

‘We are so excited to be working with so many extraordinary partners to deliver I know, I wish, I will in this our 25th anniversary year. The great thing about this project, is that young people will be given centre stage and their voices will proudly tell the world what the know about themselves and their communities, what they wish for, for the future, and what they will do to make their wishes come true. We look forward to making something truly great happen.’
Matt Lane Chief Executive Officer / Artistic Director, Eastside

‘We’re proud to be funding organisations that help develop the spoken word as an art form, as well as engage a wide and diverse range of young people. Involvement with arts and culture is crucial to imagination, self-expression and creativity in young people. We look forward to seeing the outcomes of Eastside Educational Trust’s creation of the world’s longest, youth-led spoken word poem – a wonderful, quirky way to give voice to the thoughts and hopes of our young people.’
Joyce Wilson London Area Director, Arts Council England

‘The Criterion Theatre Trust is delighted to be furthering it’s long standing relationship with Eastside by hosting the culmination of their inspired 25 th anniversary programme, I Know, I Wish, I Will. We look forward to welcoming Eastside, their partners and the young people engaged in this wonderful project to the stage at The Cri in 2020.’
Fiona Callaghan Managing Director, The Criterion Theatre

‘Grimm & Co, a Yorkshire writing charity for children and young people, are absolutely thrilled at the news that the I Know, I Wish, I Will project will be going ahead with the support of the Arts Council. This will mean so much to the young people and schools we work with and we aim to squeeze every drop of opportunity and possibility out this for our young people as a development tool and a platform for their imaginations, sensational creativity and talent.  Thrilled, absolutely thrilled!’
Deborah Bullivant Founding Director Grimm & Co

‘METAL is delighted to be a partner on I Know, I Will, I Wish. As the birthplace of John Clare, poetry and spoken word is one of the fastest growing art forms in Peterborough. Projects such as this are crucial in providing inspiration, challenge and igniting the passion in our next generation of poets.’
Sarah Haythornthwaite Senior Project Manager METAL (Peterborough)

‘It’s fantastic that the Arts Council have recognised the potential of this project to engage and empower young people – we’re delighted to be part of it and look forward to getting started!’
Sarah Forbes Education Manager Cheltenham Festivals

‘We are thrilled to be a part of the ‘I Know, I Wish, I Will’ project with Eastside. Here at WoW we have passion for spoken word, working to support some of Liverpool’s most exciting new young artists, as well as programming national and international artists in our annual festival. We can’t wait to get started in local schools and look forward to working with all the partners!’
Madeline Heneghan Co-Director Writing on the Wall

‘Boston College is delighted to be involved in supporting this unique opportunity to work with Eastside, nationally renowned spoken word artists and our fellow regional delivery partners. This is such an exciting venture for our learners, helping to promote the spoken word to
students of all ages as well as our local community alongside encouraging creativity in language – and we can’t wait to get started.’
Rebecca Clark External Funding Manager, Boston College

‘At the National Youth Theatre we believe that it is vital to give young talent from across the UK a voice on leading stages. We’re delighted to be partnering with Eastside as well as our friends at the Criterion Theatre who share this belief on a project that will put young people
centre stage in the heart of London’s West End.’
Paul Roseby CEO / Artistic Director National Youth Theatre

Eastside Educational Trust
Eastside exists to help young people develop their creative thinking, so that they are able to become the problem-solvers of tomorrow, empowered to build a better society. We achieve this by engaging children and young people through direct participation in the arts, enabling them to work with professional artists and creative practitioners, both in and outside school, with a particular focus on areas in London where our help is needed most.  Established in 1994, Eastside regularly delivers 400+ artist led creative sessions per year
inspiring over 12,000 children and young people annually from across London (and beyond) who would not otherwise have such chances. We are proud to be celebrating our 25th anniversary year throughout 2019.

Poetry reaffirms our common humanity by revealing to us that individuals, everywhere in the world, share the same questions and feelings. Poetry is the mainstay of oral tradition and, over centuries, can communicate the innermost values of diverse cultures.
In celebrating World Poetry Day, March 21, UNESCO recognizes the unique ability of poetry to capture the creative spirit of the human mind.  A decision to proclaim 21 March as World Poetry Day was adopted during UNESCO’s 30th session held in Paris in 1999.
One of the main objectives of the Day is to support linguistic diversity through poetic expression and to offer endangered languages the opportunity to be heard within their communities.  The observance of World Poetry Day is also meant to encourage a return to the oral tradition of poetry recitals, to promote the teaching of poetry, to restore a dialogue between poetry and the other arts such as theatre, dance, music and painting, and to support small publishers and create an attractive image of poetry in the media, so that the art of poetry will no longer be considered an outdated form of art, but one which enables society as a whole to regain and assert its identity.

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