Oldham Coliseum helps Kingsway Park High School ALPHA Group to welcome Little Amal

On Tuesday 2 November Little Amal, a 3.5 metre-tall puppet of a 9-year-old Syrian refugee girl representing all displaced children, was welcomed to Kingsway Park High School as part of The Walk.


As part of her visit to the school Little Amal watched a performance by the ALPHA group which was created in workshops with Oldham Coliseum Theatre’s Learning and Engagement Department. The Alpha Group is comprised of students who have recently arrived in the UK and use English as an additional language. In their sessions with the Coliseum the group build their communication and speaking skills, as well as understanding their own heritage and place within the school. 


Ben Cain, Coliseum Learning and Engagement Officer commented:It has been a really fantastic opportunity for the Coliseum to be able to work with ALPHA in using drama to enrich their school experience, as well as helping Kingsway Park staff members get to see how each pupil works outside of a classroom environment. I can’t wait to see how the students respond when they meet Little Amal!”


Elizabeth Phelps from Kingsway Park High School said: "Ben has been fantastic, working with our students to develop their skills and produce an interesting piece of drama for the event. Kingsway appreciates the partnership. We look forward to the next project."


Oldham Coliseum Theatre has worked with Kingsway Park High School over the past seven years, not only on this current project, but also the celebrated Secondary Partnership Scheme, where schools receive master classes, tickets, and a performance opportunity from the theatre.


Created by the acclaimed Handspring Puppet Company and Good Chance Theatre, Little Amal represents tens of thousands of children who, just like her, have fled war and persecution and urgently need our support to get an education and rebuild their lives. Little Amal is travelling a remarkable 8,000km celebrating the power of art and shared humanity wherever she goes.

The Walk is bringing together celebrated artists, major cultural institutions, community groups and humanitarian organisations to tell a new story of shared humanity – and to ensure the world doesn’t forget the millions of displaced children, each with their own story.


Nearing the end of her journey, having walked across Turkey, Greece, Italy, France, Switzerland, Germany, Belgium and working her way north of the UK toward Manchester, she stopped at Kingsway Park High School to discover examples of things that children learn and do in the UK.


The Walk is produced by Good Chance, Stephen Daldry, David Lan and Tracey Seaward in association with Handspring Puppet Company and is produced and presented in Rochdale by Rochdale Borough Council and Your Trust in partnership with Manchester International Festival: https://www.goodchance.org.uk/thewalk. The project is raising funds to support young refugees to build a more hopeful future: https://donate.chooselove.org/campaigns/walks-amal-fund/

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