R-E-S-P-E-C-T

changing cultures have been trading for just over 18 months now – and I’ve been involved in many and varied projects during that time. I’m pleased to say that we continue to be a busy company, and I’m finding myself in a position where I have to ask myself what, really is my priority? Where are the areas of work that matter most to me, and where do I, personally, want to put my energies for the next 18 months?

Whilst I enjoy diversity, if I have to identify what drives me – it’s the desire to help facilitate a shift in attitude which will help us change our culture, and better listen to the voices of our children and young people.

Before the current trend in education – and, in some quarters since – there’s been lots of talk about empowering student voice, but what does that mean? What good does it do if we empower our children to communicate honestly to us what they think and feel, and how they want to grow, if we don’t have ears to hear or, for whatever reason, the will or ability to act on what they tell us?

I am constantly being brought up short by something a young person says, which exposes my making of assumptions or failing to see their true point of view accurately – no wonder!  They are, of course, experiencing the world from an entirely different perspective, and I am privileged that they are taking the time to try and educate me sufficiently to have some insight into that perspective.

For my part, what I have to offer are the consistences in my experience – merely by dint of the fact of having been alive for longer than them, and with as much awareness as I can muster – with some of what they may find themselves living through.

I’m aware this is a theme that recurs through my blogs – but truly – until we, as a society, really offer our younger generations the RESPECT that they so clearly have labelled for us as a key issue, we are selling them (and ourselves) short.

This is my passion, and whether in the classroom; in a theatre; through film; through delivering talks; in mutual creation or driven advocacy – but always, always in some form of collaboration – it is this that I wish to be the focus of my work with changing cultures.

If we offer our young people’s voice a greater respect, we are teaching them to grow up respecting each other – perhaps better than we have managed – and that’s my priority.

Nikky

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