Unlock the talent inside

Since 1962 the Koestler Awards have played a unique, national role in motivating prisoners, secure hospital patients and immigration detainees to take part in the arts. The Koestler Awards are simple and powerful – we reward achievement, build self-confidence and broaden horizons for some of society’s most disadvantaged and marginalised people.

Our work harnesses the uniquely transformative power of the arts to help individuals learn the skills and gain the confidence to live creative, positive and productive lives. Each year we receive more than 7,000 entries from over 3,500 entrants across the UK in 52 categories. More than 2,000 Awards are granted by over 100 esteemed judges, and each year culminates in a curated exhibition at Southbank Centre which showcases the incredible power of the arts to transform lives.

Read more about us

  • Manchester Crime and Justice Festival 2021

    Gun Fingers: It's Not a Game
    with filmmaker and former Koestler Mentee, Simon

Manchester Crime and Justice Festival 2021

Gun Fingers: It’s Not a Game

with filmmaker and former Koestler mentee, Simon

Online, Wednesday 26th May, 17.00 – 18.00

Watch a recording of the Crime and Justice Film Festival 2021 via the Manchester Metropolitan University website.

Gun Fingers: It’s Not A Game was written and directed by filmmaker Simon, working with young people from North West London. The short film examines the phenomena of gun fingers’ and how an innocent game can become fatal.

Simon is one of over 230 people who have been supported by a Koestler Arts Mentor since the scheme began back in 2007. Following the film screening, he was joined in a Q&A by our Director of Arts, Fiona Curran.

This event was presented as part of The Manchester Crime and Justice Film Festival 2021 in collaboration with Koestler Arts and supported by the Criminal Justice Alliance. The festival was supported by the Department of Sociology at Manchester Metropolitan University and curated by staff from the university’s Policy Evaluation and Research Unit (PERU).