Stories Without Borders is a grass-roots peace project of the Montreal City Mission and the McGill Middle East Program in Civil Society and Peace Building (MMEP) connecting 8 Montreal young adults with a group of young social workers in Palestine, Israel and Jordan.
Phase I: Creative arts training
Starting in January 2009, the Montreal group was trained in story transmission at monthly workshops on theatre, audio, urban dance, gesture and video. The group then developed a workshop that uses a mixture of these media to facilitate story telling. Throughout the process group members were paired with MMEP social workers whose feedback was used in the creation of the final workshop.
Phase II: Trip to the Middle East, July 2009
During their whirlwind tour of the Middle East, the Montreal group gave their workshop at MMEP community centres throughout the region. Group members began the trip brimming with questions and left overflowing with even more questions, as well as new friends, new ideas and new hope.
Current Phase: Spreading the conversation in Montreal
Now back at home the Montreal group will be developing another workshop based on their experience to be given at community organizations in Montreal. Together with social workers in the Middle East they will also be starting a Stories Without Borders blog that will be used to continue conversations that were begun during the trip. Questions up for debate include; how can you use expression and the arts to deepen social work practices? How can you link grass roots and institutional levels of change? How do you build meaningful relationships with people you can’t meet?
How to get Involved!