Creative Climate Change Workshops for SEND families

Date Created: 15th Aug 2022

Young boy

In July, Artswork worked with Orinoco Scrap Store, Banbury, and Amelia Demicoli (artist) at Milton Keynes Arts Centre, in the beautiful Linford Park, to run a series of creative climate change workshops working with families to co-create resources. Artswork had identified that schools have some resources on tackling the issues of climate change but less is available for families using creative approaches.  

“Our young people ranged from 5yrs to 15 yrs of age, some with ADHD and ASD. The artists used natural objects, scrap materials for modelling, textiles, mud painting, storytelling and art to make  climate change come alive visually and creatively.”  

Amelia began by talking with the children about climate change – what it meant and what are the causes of it. Using photos of Andy Goldsworthy’s art they were inspired to find natural objects, leaves, flowers and seeds to make natural art, reconnecting themselves with nature. My favourite designs are this bird from feathers made by Lucy and this abstract art framed with sticks by Flavia.

A bird made by black and white feathers.
Art done by child

In contrast to natural art the families looked at waste and the art of Czech artist Veronika Richterova who designs structures out of plastic bottles, providing an alternative to recycling and highlighting the problems of plastic waste. They talked about using art to create change and inspired by her work families made designs ranging from flower sculptures, a cake with candles, a train and a machine to suck oil from the sea using waste materials from the scrap store. 

After talking about how trees are interconnected through their roots and fungi, and problems of deforestation, families responded to the theme of interconnectivity by making a large scale web installation using recycled materials. They also made their own hand woven piece of string art and made pledges about what changes they would make to live more sustainably. From this workshop the families got closer to nature and waste and took away new ideas for living more sustainably.

‘I want to put more things in the recycling bin and save animals by picking up rubbish’ 

‘Every time I see rubbish I want to pick it up’ 

‘I want to clean up my local park of litter’  

Young girl holding a cake

If you would like to learn more about running a day like this in your community, get in touch at

Orinoco Oxford extends opening hours

We are pleased to announce that from September, we will be open Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday 10am – 4pm

We are actively looking for more volunteers to support these extended hours, so please call into the shop to meet our new manager Alex to discuss.

Orinoco Banbury Store is moving

Yipee, Finally! After almost a year of fun, Saturday 13th is our last day at 15 High Street, then we shut for two weeks to move everything up the road to 57-58 High St (the old Post Office ) ready for a grand (re) opening on Saturday 27th August.

Can you help us with the move?

Please join us Sunday 14th between 9am and 12noon. Even if you only have time to push one trolley load up the road, we would love to see you!

Creative Windows for the Jubilee

We are delighted to be participating in the Age UK Creative Windows for the Jubilee project which will be taking place over the next few weeks leading up to the Jubilee bank holiday weekend from 2nd-5th June 2022. Age UK want to bring everyone together for a creative celebration of Her Majesty the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee. They are asking people of all ages to decorate their windows and gardens with artworks inspired by the Jubilee celebrations, and would love you to photograph your creations to share them on Social Media (or Age UK can visit you to take photographs if preferred) to create legacy for the project. Age UK have worked with our Age Friendly Creative Ambassadors group to design a Creative Windows for the Jubilee Creative Pack (see below) which contains lots of ideas to inspire creativity and useful information about the project. Printed copies of the Creative Windows for the Jubilee Creative Pack are available and can be collected from the following locations during opening hours;

  • The Mill Arts Centre, Spiceball Park Rd, Banbury OX16 5QE
  • Orinoco Scrapstore Banbury, 15, High Street, Banbury OX16 5EE
  • Orinoco Scrapstore Oxford, Templars Square Shopping Centre, Cowley, Oxford OX4 3XH

There will be free Creative Windows for the Jubilee Project Workshops, led by professional artists, to inspire creativity and bring people together, taking place on the following dates;

  • 2-4pm 18th May 2022: Sanctuary Community Room, East Close, Banbury OX16 3LW with artist Tom Cross
  • 2-4pm 19th May 2022: Online workshop via Zoom with artist Tom Cross
  • 2-4pm 20th May 2022: The Mill Arts Centre, Spiceball Park Road, Banbury OX16 5QE with artist Sue Green

Workshops are free but booking is required. Please book via The Mill Arts Centre by visiting the Box Office in person or telephoning on 01295 279002 or via the website here –The Mill Arts Centre Jubilee project booking

Arts Award

Orinoco, The Oxfordshire Scrapstore is excited to announce that we have been awarded Arts Award Centre status. This means we are now an accredited centre that can offer Arts Award programmes to support children and young people.

Our mission is to reduce the waste in Oxfordshire using creativity. One way we do this is through education and training. This is why we have gained Arts Award centre status. You may have come to one of our in-shop workshops, seen us out and about at playdays and community events, or we have supported your school or community with an arts project. Now, as an accredited Arts Award Centre, we can also support you in gaining a recognised qualification in the arts.

Our Outreach Co-Ordinator, Sue Smith is a qualified primary teacher and has over 20 years experience of working with schools and families, supporting them in developing hands on experience in the arts and science. As a trained Arts Award Adviser she is able to support you in your school or community group to gain an Arts Award. This means Orinoco can offer schools and communities:

  • Arts Award’s unique qualifications that support children and young people to develop as artists and arts leaders.
  • A programme that develops skills for success in 21st century life including creativity, leadership, reflective thinking and communication skills. Young people also develop knowledge and understanding of their chosen art forms.
  • Arts Award is open to anyone aged 25 and under, and embraces all interests and backgrounds.
  • Through Arts Award young people learn to work independently, helping them to prepare for further education and employment.

If your school or community would like Sue to visit and talk about what Orinoco can offer, please contact us