Who We Help

Large project 2020: CentreStage

Centrestage aims to build energetic and inclusive communities with the arts at the heart. Their approach welcomes individuals and families as part of a connected community, where their material needs of food, housing and safety can be naturally supported. Participation in the arts activities that sit at the heart of Centrestage, offers further improvements in health and wellbeing and self-fulfilment. They are exploring how universal access to the arts (and sports) can reduce inequality and, in so doing, support a route map out of poverty. Catalyst Families addresses the negative outcomes arising from the deep-rooted inequalities caused by imprisonment, poverty, social isolation and poor mental health and wellbeing. The project provides places for families to come together, support each other and share their experiences, thus reducing feelings of isolation and stigma. The project aims to provide the support required to stabilise the material needs of the child and the family but do so in a client-centric fashion. Support typically includes advice on housing, mental health, life skills and welfare.

Key achievements

  • acting as a conduit for wider Health & Social services to reach the most vulnerable children & families
  • secured a monthly £10k investment, ongoing since Jan 2020 from NHS Ayrshire & Arran and East Ayrshire HSCP
  • An estimated social return on investment (SROI) of £2.2million
  • Approx. 450 hours of volunteer support provided to CentreStage, supporting around 300 families so far.


Catalyst Families is underpinned by a set of strong principles about meaningful dialogue, place and community-led approaches. They demonstrate a solid knowledge base of the local community and excellent ‘people as partners’ ways of working. What they are then able to offer by way of influence, is a model of practice informed by experience, knowledge and valuebased principles. They are working with East Ayrshire Council, East Ayrshire Health & Social Care Partnership and NHS Ayrshire and Arran to explore collegiate ways of working in supporting vulnerable groups and those most marginalised from society. Centrestage believe that their model can be instrumental in reducing dependence on health and social services.


Centrestage is involved in research projects with the Social Innovation Partnership, Heriot Watt University and with Health Improvement Scotland/ iHub. They are invested in exploring and refining new ways of working and learning from likeminded organisations to create sustained change for children, young people, families and communities.


Centrestage has successfully brokered positive relationships with a number of influential departments within North and East Ayrshire Council, notably ‘Vibrant Communities’ which is considered a leading example in ‘place-making’ across Scotland. Their partnership working has led to a monthly increase in referrals from external sources including benefits agencies, Vibrant Communities, Social Work, NHS and justice services are increasing monthly