Peer Education - Project TRUST
The Peer Education Program has successfully broken through and transformed the fear that often surrounds difficult and controversial social issues.
Established in 1981 Illusion's Peer Education was one of the first of its kind established in the country. Project Trust, Illusion Theater’s innovative and award-winning Peer Education Program, gives agencies, schools and other groups the right to perform Illusion Theater's educational plays for their own communities. Illusion Theater has reached over 500,ooo children, adolescents and adults at 30 sites in 24 states.
The most popular Peer Education model is TRUST: Teaching, Reaching Using Students and Theater.
At TRUST sites, high school students perform Illusion’s educational plays for the elementary, middle and high schools in their communities.
Illusion Peer Education Program is dedicated to bringing the transforming power of theater to youth; to use youth to youth education to address important personal and social issues; to empower students, teachers and communities to deliver important prevention messages; to use a compelling theater-based education model that fosters the healthy development of the Peer Educators actors and their audiences, and empower them to become change agents in their community. Peer Education sites receive scripts, training, performance direction, evaluation and on-going technical assistance from the Theater’s staff of trained professionals.
Twenty eight percent of Minnesota school districts have used Illusion Theater's performances as part of their curricula. This year's Peer Education Partnerships include Fairmont, Blue Earth, Harbor City School in Duluth, MN, Lincoln Nebraska, Staten Island, New York and Juneau, Alaska.
Peer Education Scripts available
NO LAUGHING MATTER
The play centers on the lives of high school friends who deal with a variety of situations and experiences faced by many adolescents. One of the friends struggles with an eating disorder. Addresses topics such as media images and stereotypes, societal pressures to be thin, struggles with self-esteem, and a range of personal and family issues. (Grades 6-12)
CLEAR THE AIR
The play centers around eight high school students running their own radio show and website. These students portray the stations DJs, engineer and a cast of comedy players for the radio’s wild and wacky skits and routines. A key element of the play is the documentary footage of real people’s stories filmed expressly for CLEAR the AIR. Also included is a soundtrack of music for various segments. (Grades 5-9)
READY. SET. ACTION!
This program addresses eating healthy and exercising involving youth and their families. Key messages include get up and get active, stop the Pop, Turn off the TV, Eat 5 Fruits and Veggies a Day. The play includes scenes, music and dance. (Grades 3-7)
Explains the continuum of touches from good to confusing to bad – and teaches children personal body safety protection and prevention skills. Scenes address topics such as good and playful touch, bullying, cyber-bullying, cat fishing, cyber impersonation, and sexual abuse (non-touch and touch). (Grades 2-5)
NO EASY ANSWERS
Addresses adolescent issues of sexuality, sexual abuse and the misuse of power in relationships. Protection and prevention skills are introduced and explored. Scenes address topics such as sexual decision-making, date rape, sexual harassment, incest and sexual abuse. (Grades 7-12)
Focuses on ways to channel anger constructively and prevent violence and harassment. Scenes address topics such as name-calling, bullying, family violence, peer fighting, conflict resolution, racial and sexual harassment and sexual abuse. (Grades 3-6)
WHAT GOES AROUND
Deals with harassment and violence prevention. This play addresses issues of stereotypes, sexual and racial harassment, conflict resolution, eating disorders, dating violence, diversity and respect. (Grades 7-12)
For more information about Illusion's Peer Education Program, contact Karen Gundlach, Director of Education.