From August 2007-August 2017, Literature Wales’ flagship outreach project, the South Wales Literature Development Initiative (SWLDI), offered creative activities to groups and individuals who may not have had the opportunity to participate with mainstream arts and culture. It aimed to reach the people who needed us most with projects that truly met their needs.

Over the ten year period, SWLDI:

  • Engaged with over 37,500 people
  • Held over 1050 events
  • Organised over 250 tailor-made projects
  • Offered a wide variety of workshops in Welsh and English: from creative writing, drama, song-writing and rap to comic books and animation
  • Travelled across south Wales, running sessions in hospitals, schools, care homes, libraries, community halls – even holding workshops on trains


“Poverty does not just denote financial need or worklessness. Poverty of opportunity, expression, motivation or aspiration could also be taken into consideration.” – Transforming Futures

The aim of the initiative was to engage with people who may feel cut off from the traditional centres of art and culture, by bringing activities to their doorstep and tailoring the content according to their needs. SWLDI workshops contributed improving:

  • Social and personal confidence
  • Key literacy and communication skills
  • Sense of well-being
  • Personal aspiration and ambition
  • Community spirit and local pride
  • Creative expression and exploration of language

“I know I can’t change my past, but I can write my future.” – Jaz, St Joseph’s School

SWLDI worked closely with ten local authorities over the ten years, including Bridgend, Blaenau Gwent, Caerphilly, Merthyr Tydfil, Monmouthshire, Neath Port Talbot, Newport, Rhondda Cynon Taff, Torfaen and Vale of Glamorgan, as well as the Rhys Davies Trust.

To find out more about the South Wales Literature Development Initiative, visit:

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