It was hard for me to chose which value was the most important from our Polish workshop. In the end I was left with two: community and balance. Both of them seem to be intertwined with one another and we got to explore both through British Drama and Horse Assisted Education. Our participants and their willingness to share, work, inspire and laugh absolutely exceeded my expectations. Though we come from different countries and cultures it was incredible to see the similarities of our jobs, everyday struggles and share inspiring plans for the future. It only took one week to change 16 strangers into a unified group.
The goal of the project:
The goal was to create a place for our Polish youth where they can regularly work on their everyday programs and have time and space for personal development. One of the best methods to make this happen is British Drama.
British Drama – meaning LOTS of movement, taking on the perspective of others, using roles and a bit of story telling to go outside the literal meanings of words and problems. Instead we try to use stimulators, movement and roles to open discussions and take on different view points.
The process of conducting the project:
The group was between the ages of 13 and 17 from a local child-care institution. Once a week, after school they came to Atalaya Foundation where, along with another experienced trainer, I conducted workshops which lasted between 1:30-3:00 hours. During this time we used many of the techniques which we learned during out exchange in Poland. Most importantly I was able to see how diverse the application of British Drama can be. It can either be used as a warm up to address the difficulties of the past week in an indirect way, as a core method of work (as we did with taking on the roles of characters from a children’s fairy tale), or as a way to close the workshop in a way that gave participants a feeling of closure.
The „In Contact” group has now been working systemically for a year and we are set to work until until the end of 2017 (but more likely than not we will uphold this tradition in 2018). We have identified the main areas that youth want’s to keep working on: communication and assertiveness. By working on these two key competences we are in fact working on my core value: community. Through using British Drama we were able to create a unified group which supports one another and uses non-violent communication when building relationships with others.