The Big Sparks event, organised by Making It Happen, a programme funded by East Sussex County Council, is a chance for people in East Sussex to come together and showcase some of the amazing things happening in the community.

The event is free and open to everyone who lives or works in the county. Children are welcome with their parents or carers and refreshments will also be provided – it is guaranteed to be a fun day out for all!

We chatted to a few of the community-led groups and projects who will be at Big Sparks, to find out a little more about what they do.

Haven Young Creatives

Haven Young Creatives was born out of an Arts Council Research & Development Grant which created the film SAFER. This project was conceived and supported by Creative Force, a CIC based in
Eastbourne, of which Siou Hannam is one of the Directors. After the launch of SAFER it became apparent that Siou needed to focus on Haven Young Creatives, to pursue the legacy from the film, & support young people & the arts in Newhaven, the town she lives in.


  • This year we have successfully fundraised for FREE regular Drama sessions for 8-12yrs & 13-18yrs
  • We recruited two committed groups who are currently meeting weekly at Hillcrest Community Centre and are currently fund raising to continue
  • The older group will be performing with Ignite Theatre in December in A Grandmothers Grimm
  • We also received funding from two different bodies for BOOM TEEN, an inter -generational Creative Arts project, bringing together Gen Z and Baby Boomers sharing experiences of being a teenager in Newhaven. We will be working with the writer, Sara Clifford, from Inroads Productions This will begin in Jan 2023.
  • We are in consultation with Tanushka Marah from Windmill Young Peoples Theatre & Brighton Festival to be part of a show next year





Crafty Annie

Crafty Annie aims to bring affordable arts and crafts to people who are creative but can’t afford expensive classes and equipment. Our workshops can be anything from providing school holiday activities, POP Group, running workshops for employability projects, activities for the over 50’s, or providing kids activities at events such as Hailsham Festival.


  • Providing 700 low cost, technology free activity packs for families with reduced access to technology during two lockdowns


Tech Resort

At Tech Resort, we share digital skills to enrich and improve lives in our community. Digital is becoming an essential part of everyday life, and we want to equip everyone with the access and skills to thrive.

We deliver between three and six free sessions per week to help anyone aged 8+ with their digital skills. Over a quarter of the clients we see via our drop ins are homeless or at risk of homelessness, and we help them get device access by refurbishing and donating devices. 46% of the clients we see are unemployed, and we help them by providing 1:1 coaching on essential workplace related digital skills.

Biggest challenge: 

Having a suitable base for our activities – we partnered with East Sussex College who provided us with a space for over two years, allowing us to search for a more permanent base
closer to the heart of our community, where we can more easily help people who are digitally excluded.


  • We’ve provided digital skill coaching to over 130 people since moving to our new base in October 2021
  • We run two free coding and making sessions every week for young people
  • Giving young people employment and work experience opportunities







Bourne This Way

Bourne This Way is more than a support bubble. We want a fairer, more equal pathway for the LGBTQ+ community on their journey to parenthood. We provide information, guidance, and support on how to get started on and throughout your journey. This requires a holistic approach from all services, ensuring correct terminology is used and having an unassuming and non-judgemental approach.

LGBTQ+ allies are important. Let’s come together and celebrate differences and diversity, as we challenge ourselves to delve into the deepest resources of our hearts and cultivate an atmosphere of understanding, acceptance, tolerance, and compassion.

From our members:

  • “It gives space for us adults to interact, form new friendships and feel free to talk about our lives openly without fear from judgement.”
  • “It is great to be part of BTW, it provides a safe non-judgemental space for us and our children to see families that reflect ours.”
  • “It has been a lifeline for me to connect with my tribe. It enhances my wellbeing and fills my energy tank up!”


Big Sparks event

So get yourself along to the Big Sparks event and meet the amazing people behind these projects, and so many more!

There will be:

  • Films
  • Performances
  • Art exhibits and a pop-up gallery
  • Demonstrations and workshops using arts, crafts and creativity
  • Conversations, top tips and skills sharing on topics such as climate, community building, wellbeing, the environment and lots more
  • Information, advice and guidance on planning a project, setting up a group or getting funding

Come along to meet people – bring your ideas, your curiosity and get involved!

  • When: 2 – 6 pm Thursday 10th November 2022
  • Where: The Winter Garden Conference Centre, 14 Compton St, Eastbourne BN21 4BP

Book your spaceEventbrite