Understanding Diversity through the World of Music Arts & Dance

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Beyond Skin „Understanding Diversity? Open College Network (OCN) level one course ran successfully in 2014, 2015 & 2016 with the Arts Council of Northern Ireland as the principal funder.

This is an innovative a very unique course – the only one of its kind in Northern Ireland using creative processes for accredited diversity learning, enabling people of all abilities to take part. It real terms this is the alternative to academic learning processes.

Level Two

The learning from the level one programme enabled the development of a level two version with delivery changes and a new delivery partner, Bounce Culture.

Level courses have been successful delivered with Oasis Youth Portadown, North Coast Integrated College, SERC Bangor, Waveney Youth Group Ballymena and Include Youth Ards. Guest facilitation artists were Mim Sulieman (Tanzania), Abass Dodoo (Ghana) and Mauricio Velazsierra(Colombia).

Podcasts from the sessions are being broadcast via the Beyond Skin radio network, Homely Planet

And on demand via Soundcloud https://soundcloud.com/homely-planet/sets/understanding-diversity

The December 2016 – April 2017 sessions were supported by Arts Council Northern Ireland, IBIS Belfast Hotel, Armagh Banbridge Craigavon Council, Ards & North Down Council, Causeway Coast & Glens Council and Education Authority NI

Each course is delivered by professional artists and facilitators from Beyond Skin, WOMAD Foundation & OCN creative accredited partner Bounce Culture. Participants can not only learn a new creative skill but also achieve an OCN level 2 qualifications or endorsed certificates in Understanding Diversity through the World Of Music, Arts & Dance.

The OCN element is weaved into the creative content programme through a series workshops.

Example: A participant could learn a traditional Jamaican dance, produce a Podcast or learn how to make & play Colombian Flute Pipes whist also gaining a level 2 accreditation in Understanding Diversity.

Learning outcomes

  • Understand cultural norms, traditions and rituals of various communities.
  • Understand what comprises identity.
  • Understand the concepts of global citizenship, interdependence and youth empowerment
  • Understand the concepts of human rights and equality
  • Understand how music, arts & dance can be used to promote
  • Respect for diversity & personal wellbeing.


  • Diversity
  • Identity
  • Human Rights
  • Global Citizenship
  • Equality
  • #Youth4Peace

“This has been a really worthwhile project for our young people to get involved in. They really enjoyed interacting with the members of staff and it has challenged them to think about diversity in a different way from what they are used to. The fact that they participated outside of their normal project days is testimony to the fact that they enjoyed it and both the young people and us as staff would love to have other opportunities such as this” – Nicola (Include Youth)