Region: Hawke's Bay/Tairāwhiti
Art form: Multi-Disciplinary
Project name: The Connected Project
Creative name: Jo Morris - The Write Coach
Project information: The educational aims of the Connected Project are to bring together older adults with youth in a meaningful way. It enables our older adults to share their stories in a guided approach and break down generational barriers. The Connected team creates a focus for the discussion after an extensive interview with an older adult. Then it constructs learning experiences that are local and curriculum-specific, to enable schools and youth to connect and create their own story in response. The interviews with older adults are filmed, and the Connected team edits together a short 7–15-minute piece that captures the essence of the older adult’s story. Our intention is always to have older adults and youth come together for a face-to-face conversation. However, living in a Covid world, we have utilised technology to ensure we can progress no matter what alert level we may be in.
Connectedness is vital to us as human beings. The handing down of stories as knowledge makes our older adults feel valued and helps our younger generation to learn. Studies show that some of the loneliest, least-connected people in our community are drawn from these two groups: youth and older adults. Older adults can have limited mobility, limited funds, and limited understanding of technology. Teenagers have the technology but can lack the social maturity and skills to negotiate a place in society that they can call their own. The Connected Project is a platform to bring these groups together through the power of storytelling.
The educational and wellbeing outcomes for all parties involved is extensive. The project connects two parts of our community that at times struggle to find their place. By listening, sharing, coming together, and building robust outcome, we expect outcomes to be of a high standard. The creative and school will be working closely together to ensure that teachers and students maximise the potential of the programme and achieve effective outcomes. These outcomes will be presented to the school community. This will provide students with an opportunity to share their learning with older adults, parents, and the broader community. The outcomes will then become part of a presentation that will be held at Toitoi Hawke’s Bay Arts and Events Centre.
Project starting: January 2022