Shaping the future

EdShift equips the next generation with the skills and aspiration to achieve healthy relationships, with self and others, enabling us to achieve our mission and bring us closer to seeing our vision.

Drama based learning

Through a sense of exploration and wonder we can allow children and young people to navigate a complex world of feelings, thoughts and opinions.

EdShift is a community interest company that delivers drama based learning programmes across key stage 2 – 3 and 4.

We aim to provide exemplary drama based learning workshops and digital resources to enable children and young people to explore conflict situations in a safe, fun and creative environment.

Specific Outcomes

The specific outcomes likely to be achieved through EdShift’s programme include, reduced feelings of isolation, new coping skills, a wider expression of feelings, improved self-esteem, increased sense of spontaneity and positive relationships.

Workshops

Our workshops use drama processes to achieve the therapeutic goals of cohesion, empathy and personal growth.

Experiential Approach

We use an experiential approach that facilitates the participant’s ability to solve problems, express feelings appropriately, explore consequences, improve interpersonal skills and strengthen the ability to perform personal life roles.

ACT OUT/ SPEAK UP

EdShift was founded by Elspeth Lea Brook in April 2019. The company has a board of 5 directors, with experience ranging from social care management, counselling and psychotherapy, finance, youth work, domestic violence and performing arts.

From the age of 2, Elspeth attended Elwyn ballet school, through which she danced with The Royal Academy of Dancing and Northern Ballet. At school, she was known for her acting skills in drama.

In 2004 she graduated with a BA Honours and qualified as a teacher in 2007.  

 In 2008 she began her MA in Education, focussing on Augusto Boal and Forum theatre, a drama technique used in EdShift’s ACT OUT/ SPEAK UP programme.

As part of her MA, Ellie volunteered in community outreach through the Everyman Theatre, teaching young girls’ resilience and assertiveness through drama-based approaches. This led to her first ‘real job’ at a Secure Training Centre, teaching young boys on Detention Training Orders with alternative’s to violence.

In 2011 Ellie won funding to deliver ‘SAFE’, a project she designed and delivered to enable children with social, emotional, and behavioural difficulties to express themselves through arts therapy.

Ellie Brook founder of EdShift

In 2013 she began working in complex mental health and in 2015, ‘everything fell into place’ when she became the Project Manager on the Domestic Violence Perpetrator Programme.

‘It's where I found my niche. The programmes use role play as a tool to aid behavioural change for men that perpetrate violence towards women. In 2018 I ran a practitioner’s workshop at the RESPECT Conference at Amnesty International. It was a brave step, facilitating forum theatre to other domestic abuse professionals, but it paid off and conveyed the efficacy of using drama to instigate change. I will always remember facilitating a man’s final 1:1 and him saying, ‘Ellie, I am 66, I am on my third divorce and I probably won't marry again because I am an abuser, why is this not rolled out in schools’?

Ellie Brook

SpotLight

EdShift’s SpotLight Intervention was developed in response to the deaths of two children and 14 women, caused by domestic violence in the first three weeks of lockdown.

To support those affected, EdShift wrote a blog to share with professionals working with vulnerable children (See here). During this communication, EdShift was asked to create a visual guide to meet a range of ages and needs.

Around this time EdShift was contacted by Ann Brown, a domestic abuse survivor who had written her own play chronicling her experiences. Ann’s own response to the rise in domestic violence, was to livestream her play to raise awareness to larger audiences.

The funds raised were kindly donated to EdShift and a domestic violence refuge.

EdShift’s board consulted with the community, young people and survivors and decided that the funds would go towards developing a digital resource based on the initial blog written in April, to equip children with vital planning skills to reduce significant harm or injury.

"The more we researched and consulted with those with lived experience, the more we were faced with the reality that so many children in our community were living in lockdown with violence daily. Before the pandemic, the statistics were horrific. We estimated that the aftermath would triple those figures. We decided to adapt as an organisation to plug the gaps in services, alleviate additional pressures on victims and frontline staff, and support our community to respond and recover from COVID".

EdShift has sourced vital Capacity Building Funds from Comic Relief to update their website and further funds from Tesco Bags of Help to develop the SpotLight Handbook for children and young people to work through as part of their 1:1 sessions.

EdShift SpotLight

new opportunity!

We are looking for 8 individuals to fill our board of Volunteer Directors with specific knowledge and expertise in the following areas:

  • Child Sexual Exploitation (Police/ Social Services)
  • Finance and Accounting
  • Arts Therapy
  • Digital Arts
  • Child and Adolescent mental health
  • Fundraising
  • Marketing
  • Education (Primary and secondary)