The Play House brings engineering to life

Published 02/07/2021
3 minutes Read

Every year, the Millennium Point Charitable Trust Small Grants programme gives out grants of up to £20,000 to support science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) education projects in the West Midlands. We have funded many different projects across all areas of STEM, supporting learning development for young students.

Here is an example of the type of work we do, this project was funded in 2019 and shows the power of what the grants funding can achieve for STEM organisations.

Who are The Play House?

The Play House is a small theatre and education charity based inside Birmingham, who specialise in engaging schools through educational and interactive performances.

What’s the project all about?

The Play House are passionate about addressing learning gabs and developing children’s education within STEM, so they don’t miss out on career prospects. The Daughters of Invention project is a drama and engineering education project originally created through a Royal Academy of Engineering Ingenious award.

The project is aimed towards girls and children from marginalised backgrounds, using interactive tasks, acting and storytelling, to develop the children’s interest and understanding of problem solving, creative thinking and team work within engineering.

What did the Millennium Point Trust fund?

After a successful first run in 2019, The Play House were eager to bring the project to new schools in areas of deprivation across Birmingham. The Millennium Point Charitable Trust offered a fantastic opportunity for the project to expand with it’s Small Grants offering. After receiving the application, our Trust team were immediately taken to this project by it’s unique creative dimension to teaching engineering, and made no hesitation in getting involved. Our funding helped the following areas of the project:

  • Overheads for the production and delivery of the project (content creation, travel to schools etc.)
  • Resources to produce and deliver the performances in schools
  • Equipment to produce and deliver the performance in schools

What impact has the project made?

This project once again showcased the impact the Millennium Point Trust can have on young peoples lives. Over 240 children in 8 key stage 2 classes across 5 schools benefitted from the project, increasing their knowledge and understanding of engineering, while building confidence and awareness of careers within the subject.

The project also worked with the University of Birmingham, encouraging UOB students to get involved with STEM public engagement, while learning what impact it has on education in the local area.

The Play House were over the moon with the results and said: “Because of the grant from Millennium Point, The Play House is going to be inventing and creating with real-life engineers and KS2 children in Birmingham primary schools in 2020. Our STEM and drama project, Daughters of Invention, is coming back! Thanks to the Millennium Point Charitable Trust we are able to inspire a new cohort of children and their teachers.

“We will be working a with our partners from the School of Mechanical Engineering, the University of Birmingham and a cohort of young engineers to develop children’s interest (particularly girls and children from BAME backgrounds) in engineering/STEM and increase their understanding of the part problem-solving, creative thinking and team-work play in engineering.”

Help save The Play House

The Play House have an exciting program ahead for 2021-22, bringing creative activities into children’s education. The COVID-19 crises has however hit the organisation hard. The Play House need your support in order to continue helping thousands of children in economically challenging areas of the West Midlands. You can support them by clicking below to donate on their website.

About educational grant funding from Millennium Point

Educators, Charities and Not-for-Profits within the West Midlands Combined Authority can apply for up to £20,000 from Millennium Point to fund their STEM activity. For more information on how to access this funding please visit

Find more interesting content from Millennium Point over at our news section, or follow us for daily updates on FacebookTwitterInstagram and LinkedIn with @MillenniumPoint. Millennium Point is a landmark public building and multi-award-winning events venue in the Eastside of Birmingham City centre. Profits from our commercial activity are invested by the Millennium Point Charitable Trust into projects, events and initiatives which support the growth of science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) and education in the West Midlands. 

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