The primary focus of the project was to work with young people to help them understand how to reduce tensions arising from peer pressure, low self-esteem, bullying, discrimination and other issues, through a series of workshops and arts-based activities.
The project focused on improving interactions between police and young people. The program endeavoured to engage young people of culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds, though not exclusively. The project was funded with the support and involvement of the NSW Police Force and the Australian Government. The program was developed from the concepts of Horizon Theatre’s C-Red Pilot Projects.
The NSW Police Force (NSWPF) supported the C-Red project through financial contribution under its IMPACT (Innovative Models for Police and Community Training) Program and contributions including staff time invested in participation, governance and performing administrative tasks.
The project is consistent with crime-related priorities of the NSW Government’s State Plan.
The drama, puppetry and video workshops provided throughout the program explored issues such as peer pressure, bullying, low self-esteem, discrimination, crime and victimisation. They educated young participants about options available for coping with crises, trauma, conflict, anger, fear, identity issues, cultural dislocations and generational issues. Each session drew on and imparted skills in a range of genres in the performing arts such as theatre, puppetry, mime, comedy, storytelling, music, movement and video-recording/filming. A final event called the C-Red Labyrinth was staged involving Young people, Police, Youth workers, officials and others.
This program had three key objectives …
1. To educate young people about the consequences of crime and to explore alternate methods of dealing with at-risk behaviour – anger, fear, aggression, peer pressure and bullying.
2. To offer the young people the opportunity to share their experiences, explore their emotions and express their opinions through creative and productive pathways; and
3. To create opportunities for more productive police-youth dialogue and interactions in the nominated LGAs.
“A total number of 20 arts based workshops were provided with an additional 6 outside the prescribed outcomes … There were a total off 516 students in attendance at Horizon Theatre C – Red student workshops”
“The majority of students had not participated in workshops like the C- Red workshops before … A significant number of students could not find anything within the workshop that they didn’t like and could relate to conflict in the context of the law and how and why young people are involved in conflict. A significant number of students also gained useful tips on how to avoid conflict and had positive comments about the workshops that they would relate to their friends. With regard to Police involvement it was clear that Police involvement was important and that they would like to see more of it.