Fatima's Tent - Plymouth
This project is named after a story from the Middle East called "Fatima the Spinner and the Tent", by Idries Shah. Funding for this project so far has come from Migrant Impact Fund, Devon and Cornwall Police and local Schools. The aim of this project is to promote a positive attitude to diversity in schools and community groups and centres, focusing on Islamic culture and the Middle East. Our tent, which is designed for the presentation of stories and as a backdrop to art and craft activities, acts as an aid to stimulating the imagination, whilst giving a context in which to look at Islamic culture and breaking down prejudices.
The project tells stories and facilitates workshops that include; shadow puppetry (Turkish Tradition), tassel-making, pom-poms, Rajastani quilting, felt making, rug making, mosaics - with cultural and diversity awareness woven into the provision. The workshops are carried out by multi-disciplinary professional artist in residence (at PDREC), a member of the local Muslim community, Devon Police Diversity officer and PDREC workers. We have tailored our workshops to tie in with key elements of the National Curriculum including subjects such as Literacy, English, Geography, Languages, Art and Design, Citizenship, and elements including Inclusion, Personal Development and Spiritual, Moral and Cultural Development and also different key stage levels.
"This multi-talented team worked with our year 5s exploring difference, as part of their social and moral understanding. The tent was a magical experience as was the food tasting, storytelling and arts and crafts, which culminated in a wonderful and memorable day. I will be inviting the team back to work with the rest of the school." Head teacher, High View Primary School
We have worked in schools and community locations, including Oakwood, Beechwood, Highview, Widey Court and Mayflower primary schools; Plymstock, Stoke Damerel and Devonport High Secondary schools; mother and toddler groups, Prince Rock Senior Citizens group, Respect Festivals and 2013 launch, Refugee Week, and World at your Feet. We have taken the project into over 10 schools and 6 community venues to date, with 415 participants, and approx 1,200 visitors.