People United partnered with Newington Big Local in a multi-year participatory community arts project called The Best of Us.
The Best of Us uncovered stories, both past and present, that illuminated the best human characteristics and strengths of the people in Newington, Ramsgate and beyond.
Together, residents, artists, schools and community groups gathered stories of bravery, citizenship and zest, revealing and celebrating the commonalities between people regardless of difference.
The Best of Us is making more people socialise, it’s bringing people’s inner sides out and putting us together - and it’s making something big for our community. Samantha, Creative Champion
An intergenerational group of residents called the Creative Champions collaborated with artist-in-residence Nova Marshall to co-create artwork, host creative events and programme a community arts festival called Best Fest.
What a wonderful, life affirming afternoon! We came to Best Fest for an hour, stayed for three and didn’t do everything. Our hearts are happier and the much needed focus on kindness & the community will linger. Thank-you! Visitor, Best Fest
During The Best of Us 6,200 people participated in 220 events and workshops and 23 artists co-created 50 artworks with the community.
Nova continues to work in the Newington community, leading a weekly youth group called Chill Club. Best Fest became an annual community-led event.