Belongings – Rowan Tree Dramatherapy
by Bryony Brooker & Justine Staley
First of all, I want to say I love my job and after working with Tangled Feet, I love my job with rejuvenated enthusiasm, a bag full of shiny tools, an insurmountable pride in our young co-creator team, and new possibilities of what we can bring to our work.
Just as a bit of background, Justine and I are directors of Rowan Tree Dramatherapy. Founded in 2013 as a Community Interest Company, we provide a Dramatherapy Service across Kent where we are committed and dedicated to working within the community to ensure Dramatherapy is both accessible and useful. We work extensively with young people, many of whom who do not live with their birth parents. Thanks to Children in Need, we have been able to offer fully funded group therapy each year for the past seven years to Children in Care. With each group, we create a space together that offers the potential to experience a sense of belonging that they have agency over moulding, shaping, and making their own. They have a voice, they are heard, and their feelings and emotions are validated. However, outside the therapy room, all too often these young people have had no choice and no voice, in what has happened in their past, and sometimes in their present, we always strive to support agency and wondered how could their voices become tangible?
Together, we tentatively considered how a piece of therapeutic theatre could be created and how this might look. We knew we did not have the knowledge or skill set to create the vision we had (it had to be spot on) and knew that it would take a theatre company that had great integrity and experience to pull this idea off.