SA contingent of international organisation recognised for their role in exposing South African youth to theatre and performance art.
ASSITEJ SA is the South African branch of an international organisation whose goal is to reach out to children and young people and expose them to the world of theatre, a world that would otherwise be difficult for children of rural and peri-urban backgrounds to access.
The ASSITEJ(Association International du Theatre pour ‘Enfant et la Jeune/The International Association of Theatre for Children and Young People) alliance have their main offices in Zagreb Croatia but have grown significantly and have achieved a multitude of successes in their endeavours to reach out to children and young people and nurture a healthy relationship between the youth and local theatre, but they are well aware that there is a lot more that can be done to change the lives of children around the world.
Since its conception in 1965 ASSITEJ has spread globally to incorporate thousands of theatres from over 80 countries worldwide into their vision, one of which is South Africa.
ASSITEJ SA has recently received the Executive Director’s Award at the Naledi Theatre Awards which were held at the Lyric Theatre in Gold Reef City on the 18th of march earlier this year.The Executive Director’s Award is given to an organisation or individual who is considered to have made the most significant contribution to the development and enhancement of South African Theatre during the previous calendar year.
The Naledi Theatre Awards have been in existence for the past ten years, and during the time they have managed to raise their status to that of the leading theatre awards event on the Gauteng calendar and have earned the respect of many companies, organisations and individuals who are in the know regarding South African theatre, making the Executive Director’s Award a most coveted prize.
President of ASSITEJ international, Yvette Hardie, was present at the ceremony to receive the award on behalf of ASSITEJ South Africa, and spoke fondly of how the award had indicated how far they had come in realising their goals due to their being recognised by the South African world of theatre and performance art.
“ASSITEJ is deeply grateful to the many artists, individuals, theatres, sponsors, schools and businesses who have contributed to growing the ASSITEJ,” she said in acknowledgement of those who had played a part in the work that had led to them receiving the award.
Under Yvette’s leadership, the South African contingents of the organisation has managed to raise the profile of local theatre for young people and children and has helped the youth experience the power of theatre and recognise their own potential. The organisation has run a number of initiatives with the help of theatres, people and organisations who see the good that can be done and the difference that can be made through these initiatives.
Among the many projects that ASSITEJ SA is running are the innovative Theatre4Youth programme and the Take a Child to the Theatre Today programme. These initiatives look to help South African youth experience theatre and performance art in a very intimate manner and are giving a specific focus to the youth living in underprivileged communities around the country.
ASSITEJ SA believe that all children from all backgrounds deserve access to the arts, and live theatre in particular, from an early age and appeal to those working and supporting the arts to lend a hand in bringing theatre and performance art to youth who are yet to be exposed to this world of magic and wonder.
Those interested and wanting to play a role in the transformation of the lives of countless children around our country can sms Theatre4Youth to 38490 and donate 10 Rands to the Take a Child to the Theatre Today programme. If interested in doing more or know of any companies or organisations willing to make a contribution you can log onto the ASSITEJ SA website at (http://www.assitej.org.za) or contact them via the information bellow.
Contact person: Yusrah Bardien
Telephone: 021 822 0070; 021 822 00 71; 021 822 00 72
Fax: 086 232 7361
Address: Vrygrond Trust Centre, Vrygrond Avenue, Vrygrond, 7945