Creative Impact

A programme to help children and young people build their own experiences of harnessing the arts to change the world

Creative Impact is a programme, led by World Pencil, that works with schools, arts and community organisations to help children and young people to build their own experiences of harnessing the arts to change the world - making measurable impact towards sustainability development and social impact.


Young people developing their own ideas

Supporting children and young people to develop, refine and test their own ideas

Tackling global and local issues

Young people researching the social and sustainability issues they want to tackle

Collaborative problem solving

Working together to develop teamwork and collective intelligence

Measuring impact

Does it work? Young people measuring the difference they have actually made

Creative learning

Learning through designing, making and experimenting with a meaningful purpose

Create to help Covid

We need your help! Find out how you can use arts and creative ideas to help with the Coronavirus pandemic...

Why Creative Impact?


Creative Impact develops skills, understanding and conducive environments in schools and other learning contexts that support creative, arts-based learning that is motivated by real-world purpose and seeing the difference you can make


It supports children and young people to make measurable impacts towards the huge social and sustainability issues that have significant impact on their lives, now and in the future, such as pollution, climate change or social injustice.

Economy and careers

It supports children and young people to develop practical skills for the future world of work: understanding needs and challenges, bringing people together to meet them, and harnessing arts and creativity for social impact and social enterprise.

What teachers and leaders have said 

"There were things that they learnt that no one could teach them in such a short space of time, such as: perseverance, problem solving, resilience and the ability to put knowledge into actions."
"The process has been immensely effective in helping children learn about sustainability, as the best way to learn about this sort of thing is by doing it. It was clear to see the children thinking differently about the impact their lives had on the planet."
"I feel like every child had an important part to play which in turn enhances the self-esteem of the children. I would say that this effect was felt throughout all the children taking part in the project."

Ingredients in a Creative Impact approach

Researching the challenge

Children and young people doing their own research to understand the issues where they want to make a difference

Arts-based activities and skills

Having the skills and experience to develop creative and artistic ideas into reality, and with excellent results

Enquiry-based learning

Approaches to teaching and learning that are based on young people's curiosity and pursuing the answers to their own questions.

Developing ideas and actions in collaborative teams

Working ideas into designs and project plans, collaborative problem solving, and focussing in on fulfilling the intended purpose

Measuring and evaluation

Children and young people measuring the impact of their work to see if they have made the difference they hoped to achieve

Project-based design and development

Children and young people learning through designing and running their own projects

Local alignment

Aligned to what the school, or other context, wants to do and what the children and young people themselves want to change

Resources, enterprise and funding

Finding the people, materials, finances and, sometimes, social business models, that you need to meet your aspirations.

Change-making know-how

Understanding how you actually change things: people, behaviours, systems, practices etc.

Documentation and story-telling

Gathering what you learn along the way and sharing it with others

Stimuli: inspiration from what others are doing

Getting ideas from the experiences and imagination of other people across the world - how people have found ways to tackle challenges and dream up new opportunities

Communities of practice

Getting together with other people doing similar things to share experiences

How does it work? 

Creative Impact was born from seeing over many years how much children and young people can achieve, given the space and support, and also from a growing recognition of the value in being able to harness arts and creativity to make a real difference. We've been developing and piloting Creative Impact approaches since 2015, working with schools, sustainability and arts organisations.
Creative Impact projects can last days, weeks or months, depending on the aspirations and circumstances in the school, or other context. And the level of support each project needs varies too but will often include strategy and planning with senior leaders, training for staff, workshops with students and help with inspiring examples, evaluation, and documentation.
We've identified some of the key 'ingredients' in making a Creative Impact project work well below. If you'd like to get involved, please contact us for a chat about how it could work in your context.

Who's involved?

Creative Impact is led by World Pencil, a charity and social enterprise that focusses on the coming together of arts, education and sustainable development.
The programme is run through a rich partnership of primary and secondary schools, arts organisations, international aid and social change organisations, universities and others.
The core of the programme is run on a non-profit social enterprise basis and we fundraise for additional research and project work in locations of particular need.
To find out more, or to talk to us about how Creative Impact could work in your school or organisation, please get in touch.