Building partnerships with select schools
- Building and negotiating partnerships with schools according to the following criteria, with existing partner schools receiving first preference, after which first point of entry will be based upon referrals and decision at Board level.
Motivating and mapping
- Facilitating Asset Based Community-led Development (ABCD) workshops with parents showing willingness to be involved/volunteer in schools, which includes:
- Unlocking potential and motivating.
- Mapping school and community assets.
- Advocating to and mobilizing parents to be engaged in/confident about schools and developing community schools around some of the following questions/themes.
- What is a community school?
- Why and how are you involved with the school?
- What differences have you noticed in your children’s education by being involved in the school?
- Does a strong parental body create stronger School Governing Bodies (SGB)?
- How do/have people help(ed) each other?
- Stories of togetherness.
- Values/principles/quotes/slogans written and expressed – respect, kindness, tolerance etc.
- Visioning the future of the community school
- Facilitating story-telling workshops
- Traditional knowledge/stories.
- Personal stories.
- Continuing to work with the stories, visions and context specific themes with the parents and children through creative means (theatre/drama, art, music) to share with the other parents and rest of the community.
Visioning and Planning
- Organising exhibitions of the above work as fundraising events for a next project.
- Share the outcomes with other partner schools – encouraging more connecting and collaboration.
- Visioning and planning / linking assets and ideas to opportunities.
- Formalising partnership agreements between the school, parent body and Calabash in order to remain supportive after the process and hold each other accountable around decisions made.
Leveraging activities, investments and resources from outside the community
- Environmental Education and Permaculture design and implementation.
- Skills sharing, improving infrastructure and adding facilities at partner schools through linkeages with international schools and universities, volunteer placements and responsible tourism.
This process assumes that by first eliciting positive aspects of culture and community, and by taking stock of existing assets and local knowledge through creative means (the use of drama, music etc.), a strong foundation is laid; valuable learning resources, which are underpinned by local culture and knowledge, are created for sharing; a platform is created for critical dialogue; and community members are in a stronger position to make informed decision together to improve their own livelihoods and create positive change.
Allowing people to tell their stories and act it out through drama, music and art is in itself healing. Healing from the woundedness we carry from our oppressive past brings freedom and the strength to act against injustice. Furthermore, shaping society through cultural creativity gives identity and meaning that develops the full potential of citizens. In this manner the voices of civil society can be heard and acted upon.