ESOL Plus Arts

The Mayor’s ESOL Plus programme delivers pilot projects in London that seek to overcome barriers to Londoners learning English, maximising opportunities for collaboration and innovation. The first round of this programme focussed on learners with childcare needs (ESOL Plus Childcare) and those in low-paid work (ESOL Plus Employers). The findings from these programmes will be published in early 2020.  

For ESOL Plus Arts, City Hall is giving out £100,000 grant funding for innovative projects delivered in partnership between: 

  • Organisations working in English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL), and  
  • practitioners, organisations or institutions in the arts, culture and heritage sectors.

We expect to fund 4 to 5 projects of between £10,000 - £30,000 and applications from smaller organisations are particularly encouraged. Partners must work together on a project that creatively meets the needs of Londoners who face barriers to accessing or progressing in formal ESOL provision. These projects will be designed and delivered by ESOL professionals and creative or heritage practitioners, and supported by volunteers. Projects will involve: 

  • Informal language learning, using a participatory approach to ESOL; 
  • Creative or heritage activities; 
  • Progression pathways for participants after the project; 
  • A methodology that enhances social integration for participants and volunteers; 
  • Contribution to a model or resource, as part of a community of practice organised by the GLA, that will embed the project’s learning and impact past the life of the ESOL Plus Arts programme. 

Through these partnership projects, ESOL Plus Arts will provide a platform for cross-sectoral collaboration to improve social integration in London, by testing and evidencing approaches that can be mainstreamed, scaled, or disseminated as models of good practice in a range of settings.  

Successful applicants will take part in an evaluation of their project and the programme as a whole. This evaluation will inform future City Hall policy and programmes, enhancing access to opportunities for Londoners learning English and unlocking the knowledge and resources in London’s creative industries to support social integration.  

Apply for the ESOL Plus Arts programme

Applications are now open for the ESOL Plus Arts programme. The deadline is midday on Friday 17 January 2020.

We will be holding an Application Workshop on Tuesday 10 December, 2-5pm at City Hall and another one on 8th January (details to follow shortly). Please ensure you have downloaded and read the Application Pack below before attending the Application Workshop. 

When applying, we strongly advise that you draft and save your answers in a text document, using the Application Pack as a guide. Once you start your application, there is no Save function so you should only enter your application into the online form when you have prepared the answers to all questions already. 

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