All our work is confidential, of course, but though the pictures below are models, and names have been disguised, these cases are factually accurate, and typical of the results that ReAct has been able to achieve through Drama Therapy.
Cassie: a 'massive change'
When Cassie was born, her mother was fifteen. She had no contact with Cassie’s father, though he was known to have fathered many other children locally. Cassie herself was the eldest of her mother’s six children, all by different fathers. She fell out with her mother’s latest boyfriend, who was abusive, and went to live with her grandmother. There, she shared a room with a 20-year-old uncle – who is currently on bail for assault. At school, Cassie became aggressive, picking fights. She also became over-sexualised, offering herself to boys in years 10 and 11. Eating badly and putting on weight, she suffered from low self-esteem. Cassie was referred to ReAct, and has now attended a girls’ Drama Therapy group for a year. Her school has seen a massive change in her attitude and her academic achievement. She is happier and more confident; her relationship with her mother has improved; and she has returned home.
Johnson: back on track
At fifteen, Johnson was in the care of teenage sisters, and out of their control. His parents were in Nigeria, and he was CP-registered. At school, he couldn’t focus or concentrate, and it was impossible to keep him in the classroom. He stole bikes; he hung out with bad hats – and was badly bullied by them; he regularly played truant; and he was eventually picked up by the police in Oxford Street. Yet throughout, Johnson was desperate to please. With us, Johnson found he loved theatre, and we have formed a good trusting relationship. This has given him a sense of self-worth, which has fed back into his school life. His school attendance is now 100%, he’s joined a local community theatre group, and has a new sense of purpose. Johnson is back on track.
Zainab: finding her voice
When you’re only eight, when you’re rather lost in a large family, when you don’t have a permanent home, and English isn’t your first language, it’s hard to make an impression. Zainab was very shy, hardly able to talk at all, and teased by her schoolmates for being so quiet. A ten-week drama therapy programme with ReAct transformed her. She found her voice, she found an activity that involved her totally, and she began to mix easily with her peers and actually assert herself. The new Zainab is particularly noticeable in her confident classroom performance
Archie: coming to terms with loss
ReAct is not simply for the disadvantaged. Archie, eleven years old now, is from a high-achieving middle-class background. Tragically, his much-loved mother died two years ago, and Archie was badly affected. His standards of behaviour and work at school dropped dramatically, and he became withdrawn and difficult to the point where his father found it hard to cope. Referred to ReAct for one-to-one drama therapy, we have managed to help Archie out of his shell. He has just sailed through his 11-plus, and his father credits ReAct with the transformation.
Inner London School: Bridging the gap
This school is at the heart of a multi-cultural, multi-ethnic community, with a high proportion of first-generation immigrant families. At any one time, eleven different languages may be spoken by students, as first languages at home. Staff are enthusiastic and very competent, and students are generally eager to learn. The variety of languages and cultures, however, inevitably slows progress substantially, and makes achieving results difficult. A ReAct programme was started four years ago, with the conscious aim of accelerating integration and dismantling barriers, by involving students in a common activity. Results show that the programme is making a real difference. Students who joined the programme are outperforming previous generations and current students who have not chosen to take part.
If you would like to talk to organisations who are already using ReAct programmes, we’ll be very happy to arrange meetings for you.
" In this group I can express feelings that I can’t express outside. " Tamara, Aged 13