NO TO STIGMA!
Stimulating a vulnerable group of children through art (2020-21)
Pro Rodopi Foundation is implementing a large-scale project in 20 centers for children with special educational needs in three regions in Rhodopes Mountain.
The project “NO TO STIGMA! Stimulating a vulnerable group of children through art” was initiated by the theatre director Petar Todorov, the actress Desislava Mincheva and Dr. Zdravka Yaneva, a child and adolescent psychiatrist, with the participation of Zdravka Pineva – a psychologist.
The project includes the live presentation of the specialized show for children with special educational needs “Yellow” in 20 centers for children and youth with disabilities and centers for public support in Smolyan, Kardzhali and Haskovo regions, accompanied by an interactive artistic and educational workshop “Game of Senses” by actress Desislava Mincheva and theatre director Petar Todorov after the performance. Additionally, a training module on “Art – the Easiest Way to the Senses” is planned for resource teachers and parents of children with sensory-integrative dysfunction in the Regional Centre for Support of Inclusive Education – Smolyan with the assistance of the director of the Centre Tanya Boshnakova. The lecture with the opportunity for discussion of Dr. Zdravka Yaneva, a professional mental health specialist working in Sofia is planned as part of the project too. The module is planned to be recorded, digitized and distributed free of charge to the centers, together with a digital recording of the show “Yellow”.
The show and the workshop are adaptable to different spaces and will be held in 20 centers for children and youth with disabilities and centers for public support in Smolyan, Zlatograd, Nedelino, Devin, Rudozem, Madan, Kardzhali, Ardino, Dobromirtsi, Momchilgrad, Haskovo, Dimitrovgrad.
Children with special educational needs and their families, especially in small and medium-sized towns in remote and inaccessible areas of the country, have deep difficulties in coping with the task of socializing these children of all kinds – lack of adequate specialized care, lack of access to art, to a large extent, and a lack of funds to travel to large centers, where activities and specialists for them are concentrated.
The project “NO TO STIGMA! Stimulating a vulnerable group of children through art” is innovative and his whole team deeply and enthusiastically believes in its meaning and in the need for its realization. Socially, the need for such a pilot initiative, especially in small, medium and remote settlements, is more than ripe. The day-care centers there are isolated and the lack of various high-quality methods of therapy, as well as the lack of access to art, is everyday. The project provides the children covered by the centers and participating in the initiative with a free opportunity to access the professional art and to be included in a workshop as a therapeutic method, and to their resource teachers and families – high-quality specialized help.
The project is implemented with the support of the National Culture Fund of Bulgaria throughthe “Socially Engaged Arts” programme.