WILLIAM DEAN FORD
FLAT B, 7 DESPENSER STREET, RIVERSIDE, CARDIFF, CF11 6AG
GOAL: Returning to workplace after some time of independently developing creative and public performance skills that subsequently helped others develop for themselves, using my own experience (of moving from agoraphobic tendencies to being able to perform at and subsequently host, organise and promote Spoken Word events) to inspire others. Seeking full time or part time role. DBS check confirmed
CURRENT EMPLOYMENT RELATED ACTIVITY
Volunteer at Grangetown Library Hyb
General assistance at library, and on a weekly basis, assisting at FAN Club (Friends and Neighbours Club, where mostly non-native English Speakers attend to improve spoken English and social skills).).
Independent Writer/Performer/Event Organiser/Host/MC
This has mostly been voluntary activity, for personal development and subsequently assisting others’ personal development, but I have given paid performances for Time To Change Wales, Oxfam, Sefyll, Journeys (Towards Recovery From Depression) in addition to many unpaid performances in support of Charities and other organisations, including Mind, Inroads and Making Minds.
Shaw Trust Volunteer
Pricing/Hanging/Steaming clothes to prepare them for sale
Staffing the till
Stocking the displays
Banking takings on the days I volunteer
Considering (and seeking to improve) efficiency of procedures/Using own initiative
SKILLS: serving the public/interacting with the public.
Previous voluntary work
Sefyll (Mental Health Related Charity)
Initially attending Progress Cymru, a theatre group formerly held in space provided by Sefyll, I directed other members in a play written by one of the members. The group offered me and (subsequently allowed me to help the group) develop:
Creative endeavours tailored to assist people in self-expression/self-discovery/mindfulness
I then volunteered my time to Sefyll more directly where I took part in:
Committee meetings/discussions with NHS staff and third sector organisations to facilitate ensuring service users are involved in both open discussion of their own care options and seeking to improve communications between organisations and users to improve relationships and make experience of users and organisers mutually beneficial.
Committee meetings/discussions to edit/amend/approve wording on informational materials and leaflets to make them user friendly
As a result of volunteering for Sefyll I was invited to be part of the steering group debating and deciding the art content for the (then) future Mental Health unit at Llandough Hospital. This involved examining bids for commissions to produce work for permanent display. Some of my own words are also on permanent display in large metal letters , as the ‘unofficial motto’ of the unit:
WE GROW BETTER TOMORROWS WHEN WE PLANT GOOD SEEDS TODAY.
As a result of this I was invited to be on the interview panel when the position of Chief Executive of the Cardiff and Vale Health Authority was being interviewed for.
Telephone canvasser (various, cold calling)
Telephone Market Research (cold calling, UK-wide)
Admin Assistant (Benefits Agency)
Factory Work (injection Moulding)
Assistant in a Bakery.
Additional Voluntary work:
FOOD NOT BOMBS
For over three years I volunteered with FNB weekly to prepare and cook food to serve in the street for free to anyone who wanted it. Most regular clients were from the homeless community. FNB exists to promote the idea that helping people by feeding them is a better use of time and money than seeking to direct the future of the world through military means, in whatever form that takes.
A LEVEL: English, Law, Film Studies, History
O LEVEL/GCSE: English Language, English Literature, Maths, Computer Studies,
Law, Chemistry, Physics, CDT (Craft/Design/Technology)
OTHER STUDY: Short courses in Forum Theatre (Devising and Performing), Scriptwriting, Video
Production, Radio Production, Conversational French, How To Run Workshops.
I am currently taking a short accredited course in Social Psychology.
WILL FORD: Independent Writer/Performer/Event Organiser/Host/MC
When Will organises/hosts a Spoken Word Event, he follows this process:
Making contact with festival organisers
Arranging a venue and time slot, negotiating weekend ticket wristbands as proxy for performer fee, or other arrangements as appropriate, such as food and drink for performers.
Contacting performers to offer festival slots
Keeping performers informed of developments, length of performance slots, etc
Hosting and introducing Megaverse events (incorporating performance of material tailored to the event to set a mood and re-direct mood as the event demands)
Organising as precisely as possible in advance and then responding to any contingencies that arise when the event takes place, such as performer absence, hecklers, performers who exceed their slot duration.
Will is a promoter/organiser/host for RARA
RARA is a monthly spoken word open mic event held for over two years at the Mackintosh Sports Club, Keppoch Street, Roath, Cardiff. As well as providing a platform for people to share their work with an audience, Will and his fellow organiser encourage regular attendees to act as guest co-hosts, to give them the experience of doing so and further increase their confidence (generally and in a performance environment). Partially as a result of such encouragement some attendees have gone on to set up events of their own.
As well as developing his own creativity Will actively encourages the creativity and confidence of others and has encouraged/advised/coached some now regular performers on their path getting up in front of others to share their words for the very first time. Such mentoring was a natural development from his own experience of taking up performance and encountering (and overcoming) interior and exterior obstacles along the way. His work with RARA allows him to not only encourage others to read and/or perform their words to an audience but also provide an opportunity to actually do it.
In addition to organising and hosting spoken word events under his MEGAVERSE banner, Will is Writer/performer of spoken word poetry/comic verse/songs/stories. In 2017 he has had work included in award nominated poetry collection (Half Moon, Otley Press) and other anthologies including several collections of work by ‘Roath Writers’ Sold hundreds of pamphlets at performances and via Amazon Kindle Sales. Involved in writing, producing, directing and filming short films, one of which was featured at The Glastonbury Festival in in 2015.
Organising Spoken Word events, including for Hub Festival Cardiff, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017 under the self-created promotional banner Megaverse. Megaverse has also presented spoken word events for International Dylan Thomas Day and Underground/Urban Art Scene, Mental Health related events, all of which he personally organised, promoted, hosted and performed at, in addition to introducing (and leading the applause for) the performers he brought together for the events.
Time To Change Wales
In association with Time To Change Wales, Will was instrumental in organising/hosting two one day festivals as part of a group called METANOIA which offered artists/poets/musicians who self-identified as Sevice Users a platform for their creative output so that their capabilities, not their potentially stigma attracting health history, was the focus for attention. The Time To Change and Time To Change Wales organisations exist to challenge societal attitudes and reduce life chance limiting prejudice directed towards people who, because of the negativity associated with mental ill health in the media and society at large that stigmatises, and potentially further harms the health of millions of people. Will’s work was, therefore, entirely in tune with the Goals of Time To Change Wales, who showed their appreciation by hiring him to perform at their AGM.
Monthly group where Will facilitates fellow writers discussing their needs views and experiences connected with writing and create an atmosphere where people can learn from each other’s experiences, gain confidence, find public outlets for their poetry and or spoken word performance art. As well as directing writers towards RARA, Will signposts wroters toward other spoken word events and writing workshops such as those provided by Roath Writers and Cardiff Bay Writing Group