KORI was founded in 2002 by Odiri Ighamre and Paul Aiken following their successful Black Artists Development Programme: ‘Evwreni Productions,’ which was delivered widely in UK schools and prisons.
This work revealed the need for a practical programme focused on the consistent engagement of children and young people with positive learning over time.
In response to this need KORI was born. It has grown from its ‘fledgling’ days of 20 children in the Moravian Church Hall in Hornsey, to a programme that has impacted on hundreds of young people: supporting many from primary age to becoming successful young artists and coaches and managers with a passion for developing their communities.
KORI’s work is focused at young people aged between 5 to 25yrs. Many join through the ‘out of school programme’ and others are referred by; parents, schools, social services or YOT’s for support and self-development. Young people are also referred from a range of Secondary schools in Haringey for work experience.
Supported by a creative, loving and respectful environment, children in KORI are given leadership challenges right from eight years old. In their 14th year some are invited to begin training as mentors by supporting projects and workshops. They also receive exposure to youth work training, talent development and peer mentoring. Young people are referred by KORI for work experience and training to a range of experts and high performing organisations. They also have the opportunity to join the ‘Youth Empowering Youth’ Collective and work in Africa.