The Paper Birds Theater Company
The Paper Birds Theatre Company


The School of Hope (TSoH) is a digital, multi-artform project, for young creatives aged 13-25. It is based on the theme of empathy.

TSoH delves into what makes us care about other people, especially those who may be very different to us.

It encourages young people to be socially and politically engaged and aims to address the isolation many have experienced during the pandemic, increasing a sense of purpose and levels of empathy.

Through TSoH, young creatives experience a world of different voices, opinions, viewpoints and lived experiences. The project encourages debate, dialogue and connections, platforming young people as artists in their own right.

TSoH provides a vehicle for the young participants’ art, and for them to share their vision for their future and that of the generations to come.

In 2021 The Paper Birds welcomed their first graduate intake to The School of Hope. They commissioned 4 exceptional British artists to each create a bespoke filmic artwork on the theme of empathy; along with the company’s own original artwork, these sit at the heart of the TSoH online programme. The Company also collaborated with academics to shape the project and measure its impact. 9 Partner Organisations and around 75 young people from 5 countries engaged in TSoH across Summer 2021, undertaking tasks, discussions, and activities, before creating their own artworks in response.

The School of Hope culminated in the creation of a short film, A Call for Radical Empathy, made by Naomi Waring based on the young artists’ thoughts about empathy and encapsulating their artistic responses. The project was also documented by filmmaker Kee Lewis who created a short documentary to tell the story of the project. Both films premiered on Thursday 18 November 2021 at an online Graduation event which saw the first cohort of young creatives and the academics involved in the project, along with professionals working in theatre and Youth Arts and 4 invited UK-based artists, join together to look back at the project and celebrate the achievements of the young people involved. 

If you are interested in purchasing The School of Hope project to use with your young people, or being our second cohort of graduates please contact The Paper Birds’ Senior Producer, Charlotte Kalantari-Gregory by emailing: