THE INTERNATIONAL COMMITTEE
OF THE RED CROSS
In 2018, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) commissioned the ACTIONS team to adapt its methodology into an ACTIONS TOOLKIT.
The ACTIONS TOOLKIT will walk users through the preparation, rehearsal, execution and monitoring of an open forum performance. This performance allows different individuals affected by a common problem to share their perspectives, insights, and ideas for potential solutions. The toolkit can be used to go beyond the original issue of refugee reception, and extend to other concerns such as community needs assessments, sexual violence, intra-communal tensions or access to education facilities. It will be implemented in select contexts where the ICRC is active.
The ACTIONS TOOLKIT is meant to be used as an artistic tool towards improving discussion and engagement. It can help its users to:
• Highlight the voices and perspectives of those who are often excluded from consultations;
• Identify similarities and/or differences across a variety narratives;
• Monitor how a given situation is being experienced by community members;
• Enable dialogue between community members;
• Find joint solutions while managing expectations with regard to their implementation.
The methodology focuses on the needs and/or problems of all parties in a given situation. These parties may include community members, local authorities, the ICRC and/or other NGO representatives. The final performance takes the form of a public meeting where the participants follow a script based on the answers drawn from preliminary one-on-one interviews. It facilitates a horizontal exchange in which all participants, including field project managers, are on the same level.
The ACTIONS TOOLKIT allows participants to address potentially contentious issues, complexities, necessities, or insufficiencies with regards to a particular local issue, in the context of art and practicality. It promotes the circulation of information and encourages empathy and understanding, allowing for a plurality of voices to be heard in order to find common solutions.