Arts, Business & Employees 2019
Sponsored by Pendine Arts and Community Trust
Winner: Hugh James
Edward Arnoll, Hugh James & Suzanne Packer
Image by Glenn Edwards
The leading law firm commissioned Hijinx to create a training film on discrimination for its 750 staff. The partnership began with workshops for teams dealing with vulnerable clients and developed to include in-depth role play sessions focussing on communicating with people with learning disabilities. Following this, Hugh James staff and Hijinx Academy actors produced a film called What is Discrimination? It highlights the impact of workplace discrimination and, by putting learning disabled actors centre stage, brings a memorable authenticity to mandatory equality and diversity training. The film will be used to train all new employees and discussions are underway about other aspects of training with Hijinx actors. The judges were impressed by the way the partnership continues to evolve with positive benefits to both the business and the arts organisation and felt it was a clear winner in this category.
Valero’s ongoing sponsorship of the Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama’s West Wales Young Actors’ Studio developed in 2018 to provide training for refinery staff. 24 employees took part in pilot arts based training sessions at Pembrokeshire College ending with each participant giving a presentation from the stage of the Merlin Theatre. The partners now wish to develop the programme of workshops focussing on raising the staff’s confidence and aspirations.
Wales & West Utilities (WWU)
WWU wanted to extend its staff training on communicating well with vulnerable customers and partnered Hijinx to make four interactive films designed for the company’s 800 engineers. The films offer scenarios where multiple solutions are offered at key decision points. The cast of learning disabled actors play out the experience of each option in a memorable and powerful demonstration of behaviours. Hijinx actors also ran communication skills workshops for contact centre staff and these continue throughout 2019.