With our funds from the theatre sector we hope to offer refugees the opportunity to gradually free themselves from their precarious situation and to change their perspectives. In doing so, we rely on the transformative power of the theatre, supported by trauma processing therapy theories. We support and stimulate their personal strength and reawaken their cultural rootedness.
The theatre project, in partnership with the Goethe Institute, is directed towards refugee children and adults, mainly from Syria, who are staying at refugee camps in the Independent Region of Kurdistan in Iraq. We work together with two camps, each with about 6,000 families. The theatre workshops take place on the grounds of the Goethe Institute Iraq / Connection Office Erbil.
The past six months have shown us not only that our pragmatic approach is effective, but also how important the consistent work in fixed structures is for the children and the educators. The children’s development in particular has been enormous.
They see that there is no difference between girls and boys, and learn to embrace one another emphatically. Children and adults interact with each other on the same level. They learn that needs are being noticed and taken seriously, and that there is also room for negative emotions.
FACTS AND FIGURES
- CAMPS: 2
- COUNSELORS PER CAMP: 6
- COURSES: 4 times a week, continuous. (Since early June 2016, 2 weekly dates per camp)
- PARTICIPATING CHILDREN PER CAMP: 50
COMPLETED WORKSHOPS 2016:
- Theatre workshop l: Object theatre and the basics of theatre play, from 27 May to 3 June 2016, Erbil / Iraq
- Theatre workshop lI: Fundamental clown and mime, from 12 to 20 September 2016, Erbil / Iraq
- Theatre workshop lll .: Fundamental rhythm and dance, from 29 November to 4 December 2016, Erbil / Iraq
COMPLETED WORKSHOPS 2017:
- Theatre workshop IV: Object theatre and the basics of theatre play Part 2, from 21 to 31 March 2017, Erbil / Iraq
- Theatre workshop V: Basic dance and rhythm Part 2, from 17 to 28 May 2017, Erbil / Iraq
- Theatre workshop VI: Clown and mime Part 2, from 12 to 22 September 2017, Erbil / Iraq
- Theatre workshop VII: Music Part 1, from 21 November to 1 December 2017, Erbil / Iraq
For me, my future had no meaning. I didn’t know what else to do. But since I’ve been working at the Woven Theatre, I feel valuable. My life has meaning. I like working with the children and learning for myself as well.
The children’s parents find the project great and are very grateful that their children are a part of it. They are calmer, more balanced and happier. They play more and have become better at entertaining themselves and their siblings.
I haven’t had this much fun in a long time. When I work with the children or in your workshop, I forget all of the cruel and terrible things that used to haunt me.
For the first time in my life, I was, as a woman, able to behave and show myself as I pleased. I was able to do everything I wanted to do this week and no one rebuked me for something or forbade me anything.
I haven’t laughed this much in years. I didn’t know that I was still able to.
My wife and my children are very happy. This is the first time in the last three years I have been able to play with my children. They think it’s great.
Coming to live
In cooperation with the Volksbühne Basel and the Kulturbrücke, we offer children and adults who have fled to Greece a cultural and psychological prospect to build bridges and to help them to integrate themselves in the host country.
The cultural identity of each individual forms the basis of our work. The project is directed by Anina Jendreyko, director and actress, lecturer for acting comedies, and director of the Volksbühne Basel.