Puppets for Refugees 7

Time to paint

I love working with puppets but sometimes I need a break! Fortunately I’m as passionate about painting – and when this is a collaborative project, especially with children then all the better. Robin and me had been visiting the Prosfygika community for a few weeks doing puppet making and cardboard crafts. The space and facilities for children there is quite basic and we discussed other ways we could contribute and perhaps have a longer lasting impact – as opposed to the temporary nature of card constructions. We agreed a mural would be a good addition. Using a comic-style language learning book about Greek mythology for ideas, we made a few sketches together and got started. Painting is universal – give a child a loaded paint brush and point them the wall and they’ll be happily engrossed for hours!  Take a look at what we painted…

The Travelling Shadow Puppets – Winter in Athens

Teaming up with Robin and Kitti was the best thing that could have happening for me. It made running workshops into an adventure. I’m so glad we made this short film about our times.

Morris dances at City Plaza

The workshops with children are mostly craft-based activities; making puppets and playing with shadows, but we also take a selection of puppets along. My glove/hand puppets are made of fabric and well made, which means they can be played with and pulled about with very few casualties (the puppets, I mean!)

I’d pack Morris my marionette with me when I can to Athens, but was unsure about letting him out of his box. I think I was being over-protective! Here he is dancing along to Sakis playing violin at a workshop at City Plaza

Mosaic Project

Robert from Massachusetts spent a few days at Khora doing a mosaic project with the kids, which they loved. He spends half his year visiting orphanages, etc in Cambodia, Brazil, Sri Lanka… He finds places that could benefit from such a project – offers his services in return for being looked after while there, gets himself there and does his stuff. He’s been doing this for years. Got me thinking. Here’s some pics of the Khora mosaics. Guess which one I did!

Moving Pictures – Cinema for Refugees

I met Will two days before I came to Athens. He’d driven down from Holmfirth to catch me before I left and we introduced ourselves while I was rushing around running the Beacons Lantern Procession. Will had started a crowd fund project working with Refugees too.

Moving Pictures is taking a mobile cinema to mainland Europe to play movies for refugees.  By taking a cinema on the road we aim to inspire, and however briefly- to offer some escape from difficult circumstances.”

I met will again a few weeks later when he arrived in Athens having driven across Europe visiting camps along the way and screening films. I gave him a hand setting up at City Plaza one evening and watch Shaun the Sheep, Pingu and Tom & Jerry – the kids loved it! (so did I) Again, it was a fleeting visit as Will was heading off to do more shows at the camps on Lesvos before heading home.

Read about Will’s crowd fund adventures HERE




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