"With Footwork's support, we have been able to challenge perceptions around the criminalisation of women through public-facing artistic projects which humanise complex issues and inspire audiences to action.”
Sally Muckley, Head of Operations at Clean Break
A women’s theatre company changing lives and changing minds – on stage, in prison and in the community.
Clean Break has been operating for over 40 years, using the art of theatre to help reveal the damage caused to women as a result of failures of the criminal justice system. As the only women’s theatre company of its kind, Clean Break offers workshops and projects both within prisons and throughout the community, at their women-only home in North London and at women's centres, to transform the lives of women who have experienced the criminal justice system or who are at risk of entering it due to the challenges they are facing, such as homelessness, mental health or alcohol and drug use issues.
What did we fund?
Footwork has had a long-standing relationship with Clean Break, providing unrestricted funding, supporting them to deliver their important work. In 2019 we co-produced a film with them titled ‘Without Walls’ (include link), in which women participating in Clean Break’s programme described their experiences and failings of the criminal justice system, and argued powerfully for greater support for women and families within communities.
What value do we see in Clean Break’s programme?
The innovative work of Clean Break challenges perceptions around the criminalisation of women and the complex social challenges they face. Through writing and theatre members are given a voice – to tell their story and inspire discussion, action and policy change.
What impact has our support had?
Funding from Footwork has supported Clean Break to develop a more responsive and comprehensive members programme with increased holistic support and professional development opportunities. The unrestricted support across a number of years, has enabled Clean Break to build on their resilience and sustainability, running a safe community space, supporting their volunteers and employing specialist staff.