Shankill Primary School Visit ‘R.A.D.A.R’ with Shankill Alternatives

Posted May 19, 2015 by Shankill Alternatives in Updates

In the months of March, April and May 2015, Greater Shankill Alternatives began their yearly workshops in Primary schools across the Greater Shankill.  Alternatives engage with primary 7 classes each year in order to create awareness around a range of issues with young people before they move into the various Post-Primary schools.  Alternatives completed three workshops with the following schools – Forthriver, Wheatfield, Black Mountain, Malvern, Harmony, Springhill and Glenwood Primary School.  These sessions were around Anti-social Behaviour awareness, Anti hate crime/diversity and a game looking at Restorative Justice and making positive choices around behaviour, education and drugs/ alcohol. 

In the 7 schools, we worked with 222 young people.  The response from the young people across the primary schools was excellent.  As a result, we offered the various schools the opportunity to attend RADAR NI and two of the schools were able to take part in this.  RADAR stands for (Risk Avoidance and Danger Awareness Resource) and is Northern Ireland’s first fully interactive safety and life skills centre.

Alternatives Staff took the young people around the centre, looking at safety in the home, in public parks, on rivers/beaches, on public transport (such as cars, buses and trains), on farms and on electrical generators.  We were able to get the young people to take part in role plays highlighting the consequences of anti-social behaviour and were able to show them a court experience and a prison cell to create awareness of real life scenarios.  While at Radar NI, we also brought in an artist to get the young people to design and create two murals around the issues we talked about in the various workshops.  The first mural was looking at anti-social behaviour and the second one was around anti-racism and how diversity is a positive thing.  The message on both murals was – we can use our hands to hurt others or we can use our hands to help others – Let’s reach out to help.  Each school which took part in the project will be given a mural for their school to raise awareness of the issues discussed and their positive contribution to the safety of others. 

One of the teachers got in touch with us afterwards with the following feedback –

“The Radar NI experience was an excellent celebration event to end the workshops with Alternatives. The children were really excited to take part and really enjoyed the tour of the Centre which made them think about their own safety and behaviour. Participating in painting the mural was a lovely activity which again got them thinking about their actions and the effect of those actions on others. I can see that it will be an extremely valuable resource to encourage children and teenagers to keep safe. “


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