Creating space for children to share together.
The Schools Shed project was piloted by Groundwork Northern Ireland in 2019/20, and was funded by The Executive Office’s ‘Together: Building a United Community (T:BUC)’ Central Good Relations Funding Programme.
The School Shed project worked with four primary schools in North and West Belfast, from a mixture of different backgrounds, to create a Shared Shed model, which fostered collaboration and shared learning and embedded a good relations culture with participating staff and pupils. The Shared Shed model is based on the highly successful Men’s Shed model of collaboration and peer support. We believe that earlier interventions to increase good relations and connectedness among children and young people in Northern Ireland is essential.
This project was designed to increase awareness of good relations, diversity, equality and collaboration so that a bespoke project was designed to address an issue, which is common to all primary school children, and was chosen by the pupils involved in the project so that they produced a resource that will help all children, regardless of religion or race.
The participating pupils this year chose to create a comic book and poster to address the issue of bullying in their schools and local community. You can access the comic book online here.
The essence of this project was to bring primary school children from different backgrounds together so that they could work on a project that tackles an issue common to them because we all have similarities, we all worry about bullying or exam stress or how to be safe online. We believe bringing the innovative Men’s Shed model to schools brought about positive change in our communities as a shared shed is not just about a building, but the connections, relationships between its members, friendships and sharing of skills and knowledge.
Access the School Shed Anti Bullying Comic Book ‘The Good Bully’, designed by children taking part in the School Shed pilot programme 2019-20.
You can access activities and resources to accompany the comic book story here.
If you would like to know more about the project or to access our resources, including a printed version of the poster or comic book, please contact our Communities Lead, Rachel Toner: firstname.lastname@example.org