The Potential Of A Good Collaboration

Issue 88

Like many folks, theatre, drama and creative learning company Mortal Fools are getting out and about - networking and making connections.

We attended the recent Womble Bond Dickinson’s North East digital sector event hosted in partnership with UKTN and Invest Newcastle. Now you may wonder, why was a theatre company attending a business tech event!? Well, the answer, was summed up beautifully by Dawn Dunn, at Invest Newcastle during the first panel, as she urged businesses to “look outside your boundaries” and championed collaboration over competition. And that’s very Mortal Fools.

Since our award winning partnership with Vida Creative in which we created Melva, our fun and accessible creative digital intervention, supporting children’s mental health, emotional development and wellbeing, we learnt the powerful potential of a good collaboration. Together we created a digital product that is disrupting wellbeing education and being used by 25 primary schools (with more to come!). This partnership of two very different organisations, was underpinned by the core purpose of improving the lives of children in response to the mental health crisis accelerated by the pandemic.

The success of that partnership encouraged us to be bolder seek collaborative opportunities in sectors and spaces in which you may not expect to find a theatre company. Consequently, we are open to connecting with any business that is as passionate about North East young people as we are and this openness has indeed led to opportunities outside of our “boundaries”, each crucial to our success and growth as a company over the last few years.

At Mortal Fools we specialise in co-creating dynamic, socially relevant, high-quality performance-based creative projects with children and young people. The world is an increasingly scary place, and our work enables young people to feel empowered in their decisions, be brave, explore their skills and preferences in safe spaces, experiment and learn to fail (a key component of creativity and resilience). As a theatre company, we mostly use drama and theatre-based approaches – inter-personal and underpinned by social sciences by nature to enable an improved understanding of relationships and effective communication, changes in outlook, confidence and accomplishment, increased leadership, and employability skills, enhanced personal resilience and capabilities and young people actively scaffolding towards a healthy and fruitful future. To put it boldly, our work can be transformational.

With this knowledge and our engagement with young people, as we sat listening to the digital sector event panels discuss the “war on talent” and the regional skills gaps, all we could think about was collaboration – if only more businesses connected with organisations, like us, working with young people in the region, actively cultivating the future workforce. If only more organisations invested in young people in the region. We can help businesses do that; by connecting with and investing in our work, organisations are contributing to the development of homegrown talent. The skills gap problem requires a cross sector collaborative solution.

In this spirit of openness, we’d like to extend an invitation to leaders, and organisations, to join us to work collaboratively with courage and care, to make the region a better place to grow up with clearer career pathways of opportunity. Investing in Mortal Fools is an investment in the beginning of that work and enhanced employability beyond the education system alongside a meaningful, impactful and tangible way to demonstrate ESG/ CSR work to local communities.

So why not join the likes of Muckle LLP, Ryder Architecture, Kavlifondet, CyberNorth and Crystallised and connect with us – together, we can achieve more through cross sector collaboration.

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