Level 3 and 4 Performing Arts students of Stamford College, part of Inspire Education Group, were hired as actors in an educational short film, commissioned by Cambridgeshire Police.
Filmed as part of the Cambridgeshire Police Safer Streets Project and Businesses Against Abuse Accreditation Scheme, the film was designed to educate night-time industry employers about the issue of sexual violence against women and girls. Film Director, Tom Woodcock, offered Stamford College Performing Arts students the opportunity to participate in the film, with 17 learners getting involved in the filming over a number of days and locations.
The professional environment enabled students to put their formal College learning into practise, furthering their script development, screen performance and improvisation skills. Moreover, students were able to work towards an important agenda, delivering a powerful message about scenarios in which women and girls often fall victim to incidents of sexism, sexual harassment and even violence. Set in nightclub and gym settings, the film depicts perpetrators spiking drinks, inappropriately touching, trying to obtain contact details, taking unwanted pictures and enticing an intoxicated girl into a taxi. It offers guidance on identifying predatory behaviour and strategies on managing these different situations. Julie Addison, Assistant Principal of Student Experience & Support at Stamford College, explained, “This activity has allowed us to work with our young people to ensure our staff and students are aware of potential risks in their everyday lives and will help us to continue to promote the IEG zero tolerance approach to sexual harassment and sexual violence towards young people. We will continue to educate our staff and students in support of keeping themselves safe by providing the skills required to identify it, call it out and educate others”.
Film Director, Tom Woodcock praised the students’ hard work, “Working with Performing Arts students at Stamford College has been a hugely rewarding experience. They rehearsed and developed scenarios for a professional film, showing enormous dedication and care in their approach to a serious and challenging subject. The work they have produced has been a testament to the students, the College staff and the course. I would have no hesitation in working with students and staff in the Performing Arts department at Stamford College in the future”.
The film premiered in the College’s Theatre, with all the students involved, College staff, and senior members of Cambridgeshire Police in attendance. As a gesture of their appreciation, all participating students were awarded a certificate signed by the Chief Constable, and an Amazon gift card.
Inspire Education Group would like to express their gratitude to Cambridgeshire Police, specifically Superintendent Laura Hunt, Inspector Ian Lombardo and PC Nicky Peacock, for supporting the students’ progression by offering this opportunity. Sincere thanks go to Tom Woodcock for his invaluable advice and direction.