Orcadia Creative Learning Centre
Drama in the Wider Community
Orcadia is, to our knowledge, unique in the UK. It provides a huge range of drama/arts based activities aimed currently at the special needs community, but with a philosophy that these activities are beneficial to the community as a whole. They work on their own internally generated activities as well as responding to the needs of the community and specific requests from organisations both nationally and internationally. Lynne Barbour, arts director, displays a phenomenal enthusiasm and passion for Orcadia's work and we feel that this is certainly an organisation we should work with.
Aims Of Orcadia Movement
Orcadia Movement is a charity registered in Scotland since 1991. It has been a pioneer of Communication Arts for all those with special needs, both children and adults. The aim of these programmes is to improve the life and social skills of people with special needs and to seek to do that through programmes in music, dance, drama, movement, mime, puppetry and creative arts. The content of the work varies from small classes of ten, to one-to-one contact sessions, all within the context of tailor-made programmes geared to the needs of each individual student. Orcadia Movement also undertakes workshops and seminars to help families, tutors and carers better understand and fulfil their role in the process of care in the community.
Working In The Local Community
In recent years Orcadia Movement has responded to appeals for courses from a wide spectrum of schools, colleges and local authority run day centres, As well as this it has maintained on-going programmes with Non-Governmental Organisations such as Scottish Downs Syndrome Association., Barnardo's and the Church of Scotland Eskmills Project.
In addition, Orcadia Movement has conducted Summer Schools in Greece, Germany, Norway, Denmark, Ireland and Florida, USA. In Eastern Europe, too, there has been involvement in Albania, Romania and Bulgaria, but most specially and extensively a three year on-going programme in Slovakia supported and part financed by the Slovakian government and Charity Know How, London.
Complimenting Existing Provision
Through this experience and the many contacts with professionals in their field it has become all too obvious to us that despite a lot of good work being done, there are many gaps in the field of care in the community. Gaps that are nowhere being fully addressed at this present moment. The Orcadia Movement Programmes have much to offer in this respect and they have been tried and tested in a whole variety of different situations, socially and educationally.
The Role Of The Creative Learning Centre
These programmes now need to be further developed and extended. They need to be made more readily available to special needs students and their families, with a continuity to provide courses for schools, colleges, day centres and voluntary bodies. The only practical way to do this was to establish a centre in which the Orcadia Programmes can be presented and conducted in a tailor-made setting offering freedom of access to all those who want to attend and who would undoubtedly benefit from these programmes.
What The Creative Learning Centre Could
- Programmes in Creative and Expressive Arts helping the understanding of feelings, emotions and self.
- Contact programmes to help develop body awareness and the relationship between the physical and the expressive body.
- Programmes in Expressive Arts through Drama, Mime and Music.
- A' Stepping Stones' programme introducing young children to the whole range of Communication Arts and enabling them to gain the skills for any other programmes.
- Social Arts and integrated programmes providing the bridge between the special needs person and carer, and the special needs person and their wider community.
Enriching Lives Through Communication Arts
Care in the Community is the policy - it needs to work, and surely demands more than simply exchanging the walls of the institution for the walls of a sheltered house. The people with special needs and learning disabilities emerging into the community will want to have the skills and the confidence necessary to not just be in the community but rather be of their community, contributing to their full potential. Orcadia Movement seeks to develop that potential by helping the person with special needs to recognise and develop their social skills through our Communication Arts programme. Our concern is to strengthen the positive creative energy and so provide the person, irrespective of disability, with a medium to discover positive identity, self expression and the pure joy of participating and just being.
Through Orcadia, which is an inclusive arts education organisation, we will provide communication arts to everyone on the basis of a shared and equal involvement.
- We agree to defend and develop the concept of sensory learning for ALL.
- We believe that everyone can learn through sensory learning - and has a need to be expressive.
- Regardless of need we believe that all the work we do must lead to everyone having the right to inclusion
- We understand that to gain inclusion for everyone that there will be occasions where we give an 'exclusive' service to individuals.
- We will create and maintain an environment where people can feel safe to be expressive.
- We hold that everyone within the organisation will be required to have an active and shared involvement.
- We will not develop our services beyond the scope of our resources.
- We acknowledge that no principal or practice can ever be infallible or sacrosanct and because of this we will continue to develop and learn.