The underpinning purpose of the Verbal Arts Centre is the promotion of the language arts, celebration of commonality and diversity, development of knowledge, understanding and excellence in creative performance and critical practice across the verbal arts forms, together with research, publications and provision of information. The Verbal Arts Centre was established in 1992 to be a space, both physical and conceptual that provides all members of the community regardless of age, background or ability with the opportunities, skills and resources to tell their story using creative means and to experience and engage with the stories of others.
Verbal Arts’ core programmes use a shared reading and reading aloud community engagement programme called Reading Rooms. Reading Rooms is an accredited training programme designed and delivered by Verbal to volunteers who become champions and deliver the programme to their peers. This programme works with a wide variety of targeted groups including older people in care homes, older people living with dementia, young people at risk and supported by Social Services, young people who are engaged with the criminal justice system, older offenders within the criminal justice system and those who are living with mental health conditions.