The Anti-Bullying Roadshow
a pastoral program
Our work with schools and students continues to remind us that bullying is a pervasive concern across educational institutions at the primary, secondary and tertiary levels. This bullying takes many forms and has evolved into an overwhelming beast with a very different face to the beast many of us knew as children. Bullying is no longer operating within a binary of black and white; it is within the murky grey areas where bullies are engaging in seemingly acceptable excuses for their actions whilst the bullied feel as though there was no real solution for their situation.
Educational interventions will often fail the students who state that these pastoral programs are either too superficial or too irrelevant to their personal experiences to be taken seriously. Anti-bullying systems already in place within schools can become overwhelmed or may even be underequipped to deal with the complexities of 21st century bullying... and that's where we come in! Our Anti-Bullying Roadshow harnesses the power of collaborative theatre and our grassroots approach which supports students, staff and parents to identify issues and propose workable solutions which better serve the school community. Our methodology allows everyone to be directly and actively involved in devising a better way forward.
International Psychology Conference
a research opportunity
Collab Company aims to engage in a range of research opportunities as they relate to the work we do in theatre and arts education both locally and internationally. This is the reason behind our decision to present a workshop at the International Psychology Conference Dubai in October 2022. Hosted every year by the team at Heriot-Watt University in Knowledge Village, the IPCD aims to act as a forum where practitioners and applied professionals can explore international knowledge and local best-practice to develop the psychology, well-being, and human performance industry within the region. Collab Company presented our workshop as a means to showcase the effective use of performing arts devices and techniques in enhancing the culture of resilience within vulnerable groups.
The theme of our theatre workshop was Exploring the impact of collaborative theatre in the creation of a culture of resilience. A dynamic topic made even more dynamic by the merging of three skilled experts who are deeply passionate about mental health, psychology, theatre, education and pastoral care. Lauren Noble, Dr Kirin Hilliar and Dr Lamya Tawfik purposefully designed the workshop to collaborate with the psychologists, educators and psychology practitioners who were all working within the MENA context. This ensured that they were learning just as much as they were teaching, accessing not only a depth of knowledge but a breadth of skill related to their work with schools in this region. The workshop was entirely interactive, casting each participant in the role of a student who was working with us on devising a new piece of anti-bullying theatre for performance within their school assembly. This was therefore an opportunity to engage in qualitative research around the impact of our pastoral program and provided Lauren, Kirin and Lamya with tangible ways to continue developing their pastoral provision within schools.
Our next phase in the Anti-Bullying Roadshow is the development phase, taking what we have learned since 2018 and applying it to our resource development and theatre-making practice. Very soon we will be taking bookings from schools, universities, colleges and other workplaces who wish to make a difference in their in-house anti-bullying policies and procedures. With our team there to support your team, every step of the way, we hope to effect lasting change in the way we approach bullying and anti-bullying initiatives in any environment.