Acta is an educational and socially-engaged arts charity, founded in 1985. The company has a long experience of working with refugees and migrants to promote integration, empowering participants to create and perform theatre based on their personal experience to the wider community. Partners include local schools with high % of refugee families; Bristol Refugee Rights (refugee touring show 2013-4); Autism Independence – new play with Somali women touring nationally and internationally https://www.acta-bristol.com/yusuf-on-tour/. The high quality of this work is recognised at a national and international level:-Baring Foundation award (2007-10); EU:- COAST, (Culture 2011-2472) European community theatre project with migrants and refugees; UK Government:- Department for Communities and Local Government and Arts Council England chose acta to lead Arts and Communities, national project using arts to promote intercultural integration for refugees, migrants, (https://vimeo.com/142522939). acta leads and coordinates REACT (Refugee engagement and integration through community theatre), (Creative Europe: 2016 -3172) which examines how community theatre can be used as a model for improving refugee integration into host communities in Sicily, UK and Netherlands. The project culminated in a festival and conference in Bristol in March 2018 (26-29th).
Acta is a learning organisation, with several strategies to share and develop community theatre practice, and disseminate our working methods. These include: quarterly seminars on participatory arts practice; Foundation- work-place training for people from diverse communities; weekly CPD workshops for staff and facilitators; regular national and international festivals and conferences; learning partnerships with other European companies eg Grey Matters, (Grundtvig 2013-15) – lifelong learning for older people; MedArt – the use of socially-engaged theatre methodologies to promote employment for marginalised people (Erasmus Plus 2015-17).
Acta has a developed methodology which uses drama and theatre techniques to engage participants in individual skills development, including communication and presentation, cooperation, self-confidence and self-validation. This methodology is based on an empathetic and caring approach, and uses the life-experiences and existing skills of participants as a starting point. Staff engaged on this project have years of experience in teaching these methods with other professionals, with students and academics, and at an international level.