Safe Ground - Using drama to educate prisoners and young people at risk in the community


GROUNDation Poetry Project

What the Project is

GROUNDation Poetry Project (GPP) was inspired by the success of our first ever spoken word affair – ‘GROUNDation I: Poetry for the People’ that took place in 2013. The project set out to allow participants to create their own piece of poetry or spoken word around the theme of ‘Home’.

How it happened:

GPP was a series of poetry and spoken word workshops. For many of the participants, it was their first encounter with poetry and/or spoken word. The workshops were led by renowned poets seen at the bottom of this page. It ran in both HMP Wandsworth’s library as well as various locations in the Wandsworth community.

What it Produced:

In March 2015, the participants of the GPP took part in a presentation in which they performed and shared the work that they had done in the workshops. In the room were family members, prison staff and guests invited from the general public. As well as this, the participants produced a limited edition handcrafted book of poetry, featuring the work from the project, entitled ‘Home’. A further two workshops, again inside and outside of the prison, bringing practical paper crafting skills, alongside design, production and business skills, saw groups of poetry workshops participants coming together to physically make 200 books. This publication has not only extended the life of the project but also make the voices of men in prison and Wandsworth local communities accessible to a wider audience.


The workshops helped to enhance creative writing skills, literacy, public speaking and performance skills. By throwing themselves into active learning and with a little bit of dialogue, debate, and expression through writing, participants developed a greater understanding and better relationships with themselves, each other, poetry and their communities.


GROUNDation won The Koestler Gold Award Under the ‘Arts Projects’ category as part of the Koestler Awards for art made in detention.

Our gallant gallery of artists:

GROUNDation Poetry Project blog

More Groundation blogs »




Sign up to our newsletter

Get Involved with Safe Ground

We'd love to hear from you and answer any questions you may have. Send us an email,
make your specialist training requests, stay in touch, check out our YouTube channel
and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.