Working with the community
York St John University and the NSPCC
A creative partnership founded in 2015 by Rachel Conlon and Jules Dorey Richmond (Senior Lecturers in Drama and Theatre).
This collaborative partnership brings together 2 areas of expertise: making theatre for social change, and safeguarding children and young people.
We are united through a creative exchange that engages young people in difficult and challenging conversations around healthy and unhealthy relationships.
Our partnership with the NSPCC continues to flourish and provides imaginative and creative ways of reaching young audiences in school settings and in wider communities with safeguarding and prevention messages. A period of script development for our plays is carried out with our NSPCC partners and support agencies in northern regional localities. This ethnographic period of research is gathered before the development of the plays with our actors and facilitators that are current MA Applied Theatre students and BA Drama: Education and Community alumni. This then leads onto the delivery of the plays, back in the localities they were originally developed in.
We provide high quality, imaginative and dynamic Theatre in Education performances, drama workshops and online film and digital resources which add value and depth to the NSPCC's campaigning work at a local, regional and national level.
Theatre in Education offers a means to approach challenging societal issues of concern, enabling young people to have an opportunity to explore, interrogate and discuss the complexities of how to navigate this terrain through watching live performance and taking part in drama workshops. We leave the schools and community organisations with digital resources that enable further exploration to be carried out, therefore extending the reach and opportunity for safeguarding messages to be embedded in the culture of the school and wider community. The partnership is driven by a hope that long term behaviour change can be achieved by utilising the arts and education in this way.
You can here more about the project on the Conversations in Social Justice podcast:
Theatre in Education plays and digital resources
It's Not Love
This Theatre in Education (TIE) play and drama workshop is designed to explore issues associated with healthy and unhealthy relationships and the prevention of interpersonal domestic violence.
It's Not OK
This Theatre in Education (TIE) play, drama workshop and online digital films and teaching and learning resource, explores the experiences of child sexual abuse and sexual exploitation through the prism of the internet, gaming, and social and familial relationships.
Digital resource training for teachers
We offer training to teachers in schools in local areas. The training focuses on skills needed for the delivery of the It's Not OK and It's Not Love online digital resources, films, and accompanying teaching packs.
These resources were designed so that further safeguarding work can continue to be delivered to school cohorts once the play has been delivered in school.
Please contact Rachel and Jules for further information.
Rachel Conlon: email@example.com
Jules Dorey Richmond: firstname.lastname@example.org
Rachel Conlon Co-director (York St John University)
The value for schools of accessing the plays, workshops and digital resources, is that they can build safeguarding support around this creative intervention and provide follow on teaching and learning for their young people. Teachers time and time again tell us how invaluable this project is, and that theatre makes these complex issues relatable and accessible for their young people.
Jules Dorey Richardson Co-director (York St John University)
We have been working with our colleagues in the NSPCC since 2015 and have built a strong partnership and good track record of creatively responding to NSPCC campaigns, developing a collaborative approach to delivering effective, exciting and high-quality work which resonates with the young people.
Helen Westerman Head of Local Campaigns (NSPCC)
The NSPCC partnership with York St John continues to flourish and helps us to provide more imaginative and creative ways of reaching audiences with safeguarding messages. We can rely on York St John for high quality, well thought through theatre pieces which add value and depth to our campaigning work at a local, regional and national level.
Curriculum delivery at York St John
On our Drama: Education and Community BA (Hons) course, It's Not Ok and It's Not Love are taught within the Children and Young People module, to our level 5 students.
Within the module, we provide teaching and learning on how to effectively deliver and facilitate the online digital resources and films and accompanying drama workshops to secondary school aged pupils within our partners schools. It offers a real world learning opportunity for our students on placement in the school, on how to deliver participatory drama and social justice practice in educational settings.
Jules and Rachel deliver this teaching and commitment to educating the next generation of professional teachers and arts practitioners in how to use effective, engaging and creative safeguarding theatre provision.