10th June 2024

St Luke’s – Sheffield’s Hospice has launched a number of collaborative projects through Sheffield Hallam University’s Future Now programme to help enrich students learning beyond the classroom.

St Luke’s – Sheffield’s Hospice has partnered with Sheffield Hallam University to support the University’s Future Now programme. The aim is to work together to support Hallam students, whilst raising awareness and understanding of a local charity and its work to a younger audience.

The Future Now programme, which supports the University’s ‘Knowledge Applied’ ethos, provides students with opportunities to collaborate with peers, communities, researchers, businesses and enterprises to tackle key societal issues in Sheffield and South Yorkshire.

Future Now projects are bespoke and allow students and local organisations to work together to develop creative solutions that will be used to tackle issues they are currently faced with. 

So far, almost 300 Hallam students have worked across six projects in collaboration with St Luke’s, providing solutions and insight for St Luke’s to consider as part of their retail and marketing strategies. 

Dr Iain Garner, Dean of the College of Social Sciences and Arts at Sheffield Hallam University, said: “Collaboration is the key to progress, bridging communities and ideas for a better future. Working alongside St Luke's has not only raised awareness of the charity but has also aligned with the aims of the Future Now project. 

“By integrating real-world issues into student courses, we foster empathy, critical thinking, and social responsibility, with real-life experience, which will help our students shape a meaningful future that we can be proud of.”

Kathryn Burkitt, Commercial Director at St Luke’s – Sheffield’s Hospice, said: “We are incredibly proud of our partnership with Sheffield Hallam University, as together, we champion the Future Now programme. Being able to provide real-life briefs, relevant experiences and materials, as part of our collaboration, has allowed us to showcase different areas of St Luke’s. 

“This collaboration not only bolsters our commitment to supporting the wider city but has helped us forge invaluable connections within the university. In turn, this will continue to raise our awareness within younger audiences and perhaps even encourage more volunteers at ground-level.”

St Luke’s – Sheffield’s Hospice, which operates in Sheffield and surrounding areas, supports people aged 18 and above with terminal illnesses, as well as their families and their loved ones, with medical and holistic care from the point of diagnosis and beyond. 

With 14 shops across Sheffield, St Luke’s are entirely dependent on donations to stock their stores. In 2023, the charity opened a brand-new concept store on The Moor, selling pre-loved, unique, curated, and eco-conscious fashion.

Since the launch of this store, which helped raise St Luke’s presence in the city centre, six projects have been created to bring real-world issues and challenges into courses. This has spanned Art & Design, Culture & Media, Law & Criminology, and Psych, Sociology & Politics, and gives Hallam students the opportunity to apply what they have learnt.

One such project, called ‘Re:Form’, debuted recently. It culminated in the ‘Worn Again’ exhibition last month and saw garments and deadstock fabric, provided by St Luke’s, customised and upcycled by students.

Another project, ‘Designing for the End’, which had support from St Luke’s and the SHU Chaplaincy team, saw cross-disciplinary MA Design students explore themes relating to end-of-life. As part of this, students were invited to a Death Café, an event ran by the charity to discuss the taboo subjects of death or dying, with the goal of breaking stigmas. 

The aim of the project was for students to create a scenario based on their research and to build prototypes, artefacts, narratives, stories, or films to bring their ideas and work to life. Once work was complete, members of the St Luke’s clinical team attended a pop-up exhibition to see the end results.

These projects allowed students to provide creative solutions to real-life problems, which will be used by St Luke’s, either in their retail chain or by their clinical team. Plus, awareness of the charity’s end-of-life care doubled, according to a pre- and post-project survey, enhancing St Luke’s outreach amongst a younger audience.

Other projects involve store design, magazine creation, digital media marketing, will writing, portrait photography, research and more. 

Find out more about the Future Now programme here:

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