Dulcie Usher, a visual artist under the name of Dulcie Davy, is from south London and founded Horizon Retreats following the completion of her undergraduate degree in Criminology & Psychology. In late 2019, she was awarded funding by The Agency at Battersea Arts Centre to support its initial development. Horizon Retreats is a nonprofit project providing 13-16 year old BAME girls with opportunities to participate in creative activities that may not usually be accessible to them. It's especially open to girls from low income backgrounds, those receiving pastoral support at school, or who have experience with the youth justice system.
Within a safe creative space, through group discussion and exercises we aim to equip girls with mental tools and practical methods to overcome common issues like low self-esteem, negative self-talk, peer pressure, anxiety and harmful relationships.
Daily workshop activities include painting, drama, baking, creating vision boards, sculpting, outdoor games and much more. Girls who participate are also often left with materials so they can continue creating when they leave. We wish to show young people within the community how much there is to be learned outside of their comfort zone, whilst building their confidence to work towards their dreams and providing knowledge that isn't solely academic.
The central goal for Horizon Retreats is to secure enough funding to take girls on free residential trips outside of the UK, particularly places such as South East Asia, the Caribbean and Africa. Being removed from your immediate environment often creates the opportunity to form a new perspective on what the world looks like, along with breaking down mental barriers surrounding how far your goals can reach. On these retreats, girls will take part in our workshops and outdoor activities whilst developing a deeper understanding of different cultures. Additionally, these trips would give the opportunity of travelling abroad to those who may have never left the UK due to their financial background.