Lea Luiz de Oliveira of Edinburgh-based project Spit it Out, tells us how a 'Together Again' microgrant from Creative Lives helped re-start their in-person activities . . .

"Spit it Out is an award-winning organisation focused on bringing to light topics that are not afforded attention or spoken about due to the structural inequality of our society: mental health; racism; LGBTQIA+ rights; sexual consent and trauma.

We realise the overarching goals of our project through collaborating in a variety of creative mediums such as performance, workshops, digital content creation and filmmaking.  Our approach to all the work we do is founded in the provision of education, open discussion and support on subjects often portrayed as taboo or underrepresented in mainstream media.

Through our gatherings and events we hope that by discussing them openly and sensitively we can not only educate, but provide outlets for communities often overlooked, marginalised or not regularly given a platform to creatively explore how said topics have affected them.

In 2022, we applied for the microgrant from Creative Lives because we wanted to bring people together again. It's very important for us to use creativity and community care to fight loneliness and isolation. The grant allowed us to organise an in-person event in March 2022 at the cafe August_21. We hosted a free performance night for the Spit it Out community, invited local artists to volunteer for the night and share their experience as well as offering the chance to members of the audience to perform or share as well.

Many people brought food and beverages that they loved, including one member bringing some of his Romanian Grandmother's homemade cherry brandy, which was a delicious after-dinner aperitif! We felt so grateful to be surrounded by our community again and to see people make new friends, talk to each other, and enjoy this time together. This last year we have organised many more events and we can’t wait to see what 2023 will bring!"