Schools Intercultural Theatre Programme

Schools Intercultural Theatre Programme

Cape Town and surrounds, South AfricaCape Town, South Africa
Organization type: 
nonprofit/ngo/citizen sector
Project Stage:
$100,000 - $250,000
Project Summary
Elevator Pitch

Concise Summary: Help us pitch this solution! Provide an explanation within 3-4 short sentences.

Accessible original theatre promoting a vision of a society that is environmentally, socially and culturally conscious and active.

About Project

Problem: What problem is this project trying to address?

At grassroots level, South Africa continues to be a very divided country, there is a great discrepancy between the haves and have-nots and this is often mirrored by the functionality of schools across the different communities of Cape Town, to the detriment of young learners. Quality education is a scarce resource. An article in The Economist in 2010, entitled South Africa’s education system: No one gets prizes, cites: “South Africa spends a bigger share of its GDP on education than any other country on the continent. Yet its results are among the worst.’ There is a great inequality in opportunity for historically disadvantaged children and young people and a massive difference in the resources available to learners in school during teaching time and outside of school.

Solution: What is the proposed solution? Please be specific!

Jungle Theatre Company creates opportunities where children and young people from different communities, cultures and economic backgrounds can come together and experience participatory theatre in education, which fosters the development of empathy on many levels. By taking learners and teachers out of schools to a neutral venue, there is an opportunity to breakdown traditional cultural and economic divides and learn from each other and with each other though their responses to the narrative and their identification with the characters. Theatre encompasses a range of modalities such as: visual; auditory; tactile; musical and kinaesthetic and is holistic in approach, reaching out to the wide spectrum of learning needs. The productions specifically cultivate empathy through the narrative and the participation of the young audience.
Impact: How does it Work

Example: Walk us through a specific example(s) of how this solution makes a difference; include its primary activities.

Schools of different income brackets, from different communities twin with a school of different status (independent, special educational needs, government etc) to take part in a programme. The more privileged twin school is asked to assist the programme by providing funds for the transport of both schools. Approximately 60 learners from each school (total 120) come together for a shared participatory theatre in education programme in a neutral venue. The learners are tasked to participate in the production and where appropriate in a workshop directly following the production, where they are divided up into mixed groups and are taught different drama skills that further the themes of the play. Productions include: empathy for domestic animals and their welfare; empathy for wild animals in the modern world; understanding the value of natural resources. The educators participate in the event and they are engaged in evaluating the intervention in terms of the engagement of the learners in the process and the support the intervention gives to the lessons in their classrooms. Jungle Theatre Company offers drama workshop lesson plans to teachers so they can continue the learning in the classroom and use different means and levels with which to engage with their learners.

Marketplace: Who else is addressing the problem outlined here? How does the proposed project differ from these approaches?

The Harlequin Foundation has a specific mandate to improve intercultural interaction in the South peninsula of Cape Town. They work in a specific area so the access to schools will not create competition for Jungle Theatre Company. Theatre Arts Admin Collective runs Family Season theatre programmes which include inviting schools to performances specifically geared towards youth. Jungle Theatre Company has performed productions within the Family Season, both programmes target school age learners. TTheatre4Youth is a website portal run by ASSITEJ South Africa listing educational productions available in South Africa for schools and organisations to access. Jungle Theatre Company can benefit from the increased awareness by being listed on the portal.
About You
Jungle Theatre Company
About You
First Name


Last Name


About Your Organization
Organization Name

Jungle Theatre Company

Organization Country

, WC, Cape Town

Country where this project is creating social impact

, WC, Cape Town and surrounds

Your role in Education


The type of school(s) your solution is affiliated with


How long has your organization been operating?

More than 5 years

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How long has your solution been in operation?

Operating for more than 5 years

Now that you have thought out your entry, help us pitch it.
Define your company, program, service, or product in 1-2 short sentences [136 characters]

An award winning dynamic organisation that uses theatre accessible to all, broaching local environmental, social and cultural issues.

Identify what is innovative about your solution in 1-2 short sentences [136 characters]

Bringing young people together to have fun through theatre and drama enables the fostering of empathy and breaks down barriers.

Social Impact
What has been the impact of your solution to date?

Through the twinning model , Jungle Theatre Company has developed strong relationships with privileged schools that support the twinning programme, some of which fostered an on going relationship with their twinned underprivileged partner school or organisation inviting them year on year to participate in the twinning programme.
The twinning model has brought together young people awaiting criminal trial who are homed in a ‘Place of Safety’ with middle class high school learners. They worked directly together in a drama workshop that was an extension of the theatre production which they had come to watch together.
The twinning model has also brought learners with special educational needs together with mainstream schools, creating inclusive education interventions and collaborations.
So far we have reached approximately 7200 learners and 60 teachers.

What is your projected impact over the next 1-3 years?

Jungle Theatre Company is proposing to run a minimum of 1 twinning programme annually. It is anticipated that the schools engaged in 2012/13 will return to the programme for the second and third year with the same partner school so that the schools build a relationship.
Through this process, the schools, through the learners and teachers will help to cultivate empathy for the diverse cultures and peoples living and learning in the wider community. It is intended that these connections will lead to other shared experiences beyond the twinning programme.
Through the twinning programme, underprivileged learners and under-resourced schools will have access to an equal learning opportunity and experience new types of learning that are not readily available for learners and teachers.

What barriers might hinder the success of your project? How do you plan to overcome them?

There are 2 main barriers – the first being the engagement of underprivileged schools that are considered ‘failing’ by the education department and therefore are not able to participate in programmes out of school premises during teaching time. The timing of exams and the required preparation clashing with Jungle Theatre Company’s anticipated roll out being the second barrier. Wide research around available venues, suitability of location will need to be conducted.
With both of these barriers Jungle Theatre Company will engage with the education department to best suit the constraints and timetables of schools.
Access to a suitable theatre venue may also delay the project as Jungle Theatre Company will need to slot in with the requirement and commitments of venues.

Winning entries present a strong plan for how they will achieve and track growth. Identify your six-month milestone for growing your impact

Target communities and a suitable venue will have been identified for the twinning programme

Identify three major tasks you will have to complete to reach your six-month milestone
Task 1

Raise funds to run the programme and cover costs

Task 2

Source venue for the programme

Task 3

Engage education department and schools

Now think bigger! Identify your 12-month impact milestone

The programme will have completed one cycle with 10 schools participating

Identify three major tasks you will have to complete to reach your 12-month milestone
Task 1

School and timetable is finalised

Task 2

Programme is implemented

Task 3

Programme is evaluated by team and beneficiaries

Founding Story: We want to hear about your "Aha!" moment. Share the story of where and when the founder(s) saw this solution's potential to change the world [125 words]

The organisation was born during a time of great change in South Africa. In 1995, Jungle Performance was a collective of street performers using a range of creative disciplines to embrace all sectors of society. From 2001 onwards, it focused on environmental themes, covering a range of social, urban and conservation issues becoming one of the first organisations to take environmental theatre to schools and communities in South Africa. Formalising as a non profit organisation in 2004, Jungle Theatre Company has partnered with a range of organisations to create programmes that are original, relevant and engaging to a young and very diverse audience. Using a range of developmental and ground-breaking approaches, Jungle Theatre Company has trained young artists in this unique style.

Tell us about your partnerships

Success is founded on the development of new and on going partnerships and affiliations across cultural, social and environmental spheres. Partners include national umbrella bodies; para-statals; local cause organizations; international charities; local government; community based organizations; arts organizations; local businesses and networks. The organisation works closely with such organizations to develop productions and implement programmes so that beneficiaries receive high quality interventions.

What type of team (staff, volunteers, etc.) will ensure that you achieve the growth milestones identified in the Social Impact section? [75 words]

The organisation is governed by a volunteer board of 7; the day-to-day management of projects is run by a management team of 3 staff and the projects are implemented by a team of 12 freelance actors and facilitators who have been developed through in house training programmes in young people's theatre making.

Please elaborate on any needs or offers you have mentioned above and/or suggest categories of support that aren't specified within the list