Creating space for children to share together.
The Schools Shed project is an exciting new project that we are piloting at Groundwork NI, which is funded by The Executive Office’s ‘Together: Building a United Community (T:BUC)’ Central Good Relations Funding Programme.
School Shed works with four primary schools in North and West Belfast, from a mixture of different backgrounds, to create a Shared Shed model, which will foster collaboration and shared learning and will embed 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 has been designed to increase awareness of good relations, diversity, equality and collaboration so that a bespoke project is designed to address an issue, which is common to all primary school children, and is chosen by the pupils involved in the project so that they can produce a resource that will help all children, regardless of religion or race.
The essence of this project is to bring primary school children from different backgrounds together so that they can 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 will bring 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.