🌈 A New Chapter in Unlock Drama’s Journey: Success at Lincolnshire Secure Children’s Home 🌈

We are thrilled to share our latest achievement - a groundbreaking workshop on violence reduction at Lincolnshire Secure Children’s Home. This initiative marks a significant step in our mission to foster positive change through Applied Theatre.

Creating Impactful Connections

Our recent session at the Secure Home was an inspiring experience, with staff and participants engaging deeply in the process. Here’s a glimpse into the positive feedback and the profound impact of the workshop:

  • Staff observed remarkable growth in the children’s confidence, noting how the workshop encouraged them to step out of their comfort zones and build meaningful relationships.
  • The theme of violence sparked insightful discussions, with children understanding its many facets and exploring alternative paths to resolve conflicts.
  • Individual stories of progress stood out, showing how the right environment can help children find their voice and overcome personal challenges.

Insights and Progress

A Model for Future Collaborations

The staff’s enthusiastic recommendation of Unlock Drama for other secure units is a powerful endorsement. They emphasised the workshop’s relevance for both welfare and custody children, advocating for its replication in similar settings across England.

Staff Feedback

How did your young people benefit from today's session?

“The children in secure settings benefit from engaging interventions with people who care. Both Kath and Nikki were engaging with our children, encouraging them even when they became challenging as well as supporting them when they appeared nervous or unsure. The ice breakers were especially important to make sure the children were comfortable and able to explore their own voices and grow in confidence. It was a pleasure to watch our children develop their self-esteem and build trust with the ladies as the day went on”.“Specifically, the workshop being based on ‘violence’, was important to highlight to the children. The discussions around the impacts of violence and how it can be prevented appeared to resonate with each child differently. They not only learned about the different ways violence can be interpreted but how a ‘change’ in one step could save either one life or many. These conversations gave the children the confidence to share some of their experiences which shows the level of trust the children established by the end of the day”.

Did you see any specific individual make progress, if so, what did you observe and why was this significant?

“Honestly, I was surprised by the level of engagement with certain individuals. Some of our children continue to build positive relationships and as teenagers have not yet found their own identity, making them vulnerable to these types of group interventions. Nikki and Kath went at the pace of each child, they were able to recognise the more outgoing children and stay trauma informed with others. I believe this is what allowed certain children to grow the trust and confidence to find their own voice and contribute to the workshop. One child that is especially vulnerable to feeling judged, who is known to have bad reactions to being laughed at was able to hold his temper and see the fun side in the workshop. This is a significant milestone that will be recorded for him as it is apparent, he has developed this skill whilst being in a secure setting”.

Would you recommend to another secure unit?

“This workshop was relevant to both our welfare children and children in custody. I will be sure to highlight this workshop in the next SAN intervention group meeting so all the secure settings in England will know the benefits of ‘Unlock Drama’”.

Why are projects like this important for young people in a secure unit?

“This type of intervention is important in rehabilitating children to go back into the community. The children in our setting complete weekly intervention sessions individually. This workshop allowed the children to discuss violence together and influence each other through their own experiences to make better choices. It is important for the children to understand that they have all witnessed or experienced violence so they can have empathy for each other which only solidifies the positive peer relationships they are building”.

Anything you would change about the project?

“I would like to take this opportunity to thank Nikki and Kath for visiting with our children today and giving their time to develop the children’s knowledge whilst challenging their mindsets regarding violence and feeling like they have more than one decision. Whilst Nikki said, ‘this workshop has given me the opportunity to look at violence with a fresh prospective of what It means to different people’, I am grateful that this was the learned experience for every child today, it was apparent that they had only considered their own experiences before today. I wouldn’t change a thing about this project. Thank you for visiting and I hope we get to see you again”.

The Importance of These Projects

Such interventions play a crucial role in rehabilitating young individuals, preparing them for reintegration into the community. These workshops provide a platform for shared experiences, fostering empathy and stronger peer relationships.

Looking Ahead with Optimism

We’re incredibly proud of this collaboration and the positive changes it has spurred. As Unlock Drama continues to grow, we invite other institutions to join us in creating transformative experiences that can reshape young lives.Stay tuned for more updates as we continue to make strides in harnessing the power of theatre for social good.