Using art to think about safety and respect in relationships.
Schools are ‘mini communities’ where respect and equality can be modeled, helping to shape positive attitudes and behaviours at an early stage of life so that students can grow into adults who can have relationships that are safe, respectful, and equal.
On December 6 2017, Rusted Tin – Contemporary Aboriginal Arts supported a joint collaboration between Relationship Australia SA’s Community Projects Team and Family Mental Health Support Service and Northern Domestic Violence Service to deliver the Respectful Relationships Art Workshop to 30 indigenous and non-Indigenous students from Paralowie R-12 School.
Young people were encouraged to engage in discussion about what safety, respect, and consent looks like in a relationship; how to identify early warning signs that something is not right; and, who to turn to for help. Artist Scott Rathman inspired them to use art to express their learnings, and they later received a t-shirt featuring a printed image of their creations as a reminder of their conversations. This educational activity was conceived for the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence. The 16 Days Campaign has been used as an organising strategy by individuals and groups around the world to call for the elimination of all forms of violence against women
All of those involved, including teachers, enjoyed the workshop and found it to be beneficial, with three-quarters of participants reporting that as a result of attending they knew more about what respect and safety looks like in relationships, and also that they could talk to someone if they didn’t feel safe.
You can find some great images of the work on the @RelationshipsAustraliaSA Facebook page.