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H.I. = Having InterDependence

Live Interactive Arts Workshops


​H.I. Workshops help people with and without disabilities play together. When we say "Hi" it’s in fun new ways and we start connecting more. The goal is not just independence, but to embrace, celebrate and expand by Having InterDependence. In the room, we all teach and learn from each other. 
 
Brian Be, LEND/Diversity Fellow co-developed the workshop activities in collaboration with Phamaly Theatre, a theater company for performers with disabilities. Printable version of poster below​​. poster for website.png
​Sample HI! Workshop Outline
Designed for: Adults with and without Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
Ideal Group Size: 15-30 people (have facilitated 50-70 people)
Room Configuration: Tables and chairs moved off-to-the-side. Big, open space needed to spread out into a circle, sometimes 2 or 3 groups. 

Goals:
  • Social engagement
  • Building community and collaboration
  • Increasing sense of belonging
  • Individual empowerment
  • Having fun and encouraging play in a safe space!

Introduction, “HI!” AND Check-In (10 min) - Entire Group in a Circle

Social Engagement Warm-Up (15 min)

Community Building and Collaboration (15-20 minutes)

Individual Empowerment (10-15 min)

Reflections (10 min)

Dance Party Closing 

from Jacob E., Self-Advocate "What impact has doing these workshops had on you?" All in all, I've become better at speaking, listening, and adapting with these workshops. It took a long time to get me comfortable in front of crowds, but these workshops allow me to dig deep within myself for different communication methods. When I'm spreading the joy, I feel it benefits the attendees AND me.  These opportunities are important, not just for me, but for those with disabilities who wish to broaden their skills.

from Kelly W., Parent – It is very important for my son Sean to be able to actively participate in his community as so many great experiences include novel elements - like new people, new settings. Typically by the time Sean relaxes enough to actively participate, the opportunity has passed. If he can open up sooner, and be part of activities that have new aspects, he will have so many more opportunities. Thanks for this workshop. 

from DJ, Participant - I felt more comfortable doing the interactive activities, sharing and dancing than I would have with a fully neurotypical group. Illustrating the concept of interdependence through activities where we had to depend on others was a great reminder that we all have value and something important to contribute.

Cost and payment system varies by group size, location and other factors. Contact us to discuss your situation​. Cost has varied from $200 to $1,000. 

Funding so far has included:
  • private pay by for profit organization
  • grant funded by community partners
  • supplemented by state and national healthcare in community leadership training.
The long-term vision is for people with disabilities and their allies to teach compassion, empathy, outcomes, lived experiences for leaders and decision-makers (i.e. human services, school administrators, business executives) to create policy and programs informed by people they effect. 

​There is research being done how Interactive Arts (dance, improv, acting, etc.) can help individuals with and without disabilities. The following are select research papers on the topic. Neither JFK Partners nor Brian Be have been part of any of these research projects.

Modugno N, Iaconelli S, Fiorlli M, Lena F, Kusch I, Mirabella G. Active theater as a complementary therapy for Parkinson's disease rehabilitation: a pilot study. Scientific World Journal. 2010;10:2301-13. http://dx.doi.org/10.1100/tsw.2010.221


Gjaerum RG1, Ineland J, Sauer L. The story about theater organizations, the public's approval, and the actors' identity formation in Nordic disability theater. Journal of Social Work in Disability & Rehabilitation. 2010;9(4):254-73. https://doi.org/10.1080/1536710X.2010.523648​


Zyga O, Russ SW, Meeker H, Kirk J. A preliminary investigation of a school-based musical theater intervention program for children with intellectual disabilities. Journal of Intellectual Disability. 2018;22(3):262-278. https://doi.org/10.1177/1744629517699334