Suggested Timing: 45-60 minutes
This activity builds on Step 3, with a choice of images and a series of prompting questions to support a group discussion. It focuses on everyday challenges faced by people needing to access food as charity and considers actions that can be taken to address these issues. Developing a shared understanding of the context and consequences of these challenges can help participants think of meaningful actions to enhance dignity.
While everyone has experienced havign their dignity undermind some people have experiences that undermine their dignity because of their race including colour, nationality, ethnic or national origin. The aim of this activity is to support participants to think about difficult social problems and potential next steps from a different perspective.
Note: This activity can be done online or in person. One facilitator will lead the discussion using one image and the step-by-step guide.
For in-person discussions, each participant will need a printed copy of the chosen image. The facilitator will need a printed copy of the discussion guide.
It is ideal for there to be 4-6 people in the group, including the facilitator. Small groups allow for each participant to contribute to the conversation more fully. For online discussions, you might consider using breakout rooms.
Choose and download one image (below), based on your context and aims. For community food providers, we recommend image 1 or 2. For those working in other contexts, such as the public sector, we recommend images 3 or 4.
Make sure that everyone can see a copy of the image well enough to look at it in detail. For online settings, consider sharing the image on screen and as a link to support viewing. Guide participants through each of the questions, allowing 5-10 minutes for each section. Encourage each participant to take part in the discussion.
Get to grips with what is happening in the image, focussing only on what is contained in the image and not on opinions or interpretations. (5-10 minutes)
What can you see?
What is happening in the picture?
What are they doing?
What are they saying?
What are they thinking?
Explore why this situation is happening. You can challenge any myths, stereotypes and misinformation that arises by asking specific questions. (5 minutes)
Why is this happening?
Why are the people doing what they are doing?
Invite participants to make a real life comparison and share their own experiences with either the person sitting next to them or with the group. (5-10 minutes)
Has this happened to you?
Has this happened to someone you know?
Does this happen in your community?
Identify what problems this situation leads to. (5-10 minutes)
What impact does this problem have on people’s lives?
What impact does this problem have on people’s sense of dignity?
What are the consequences of this problem?
Try to identify the root causes of the problem. Ask why again but invite a deeper analysis. This can be a good opportunity to give further information. (5-10 minutes)
Why does this happen?
What are the root causes of this problem?
Aim: Explore actions that can be taken to change the problem. Participants will now have a deeper understanding of the issue and empathy for how it affects people. They can use this to decide on effective actions to take in their own contexts, and consider what wider changes are needed. (10-15 minutes)
How could this situation be different?
What would an alternative look like?
What could you do to change this situation?
What changes could you make in your project?
What political or societal changes do we need?
The images used in this activity were developed by people living in the asylum process. People often have experiences that undermine their race including colour, nationality, ethnic or national origin. In 2022 the Dignity Project and the Govan Community project partnered to ensure the resources also reflected the experiences of those in the asylum process. As part of this we also created A Beginners Guide to the UK Asylum Process.
This activity is based on the work of Brazilian educator Paulo Freire on ‘codes’ or ‘codifications’ (from Freire’s Portuguese, codificacão). A code is a concrete, physical representation of a particularly critical issue, used as a mechanism to trigger or animate dialogue. Codes are developed following a ‘listening phase’ by students or community members, and can take many forms: a written dialogue, a story, a photograph, a skit, a collage, or a song. No matter what form it takes, a code represents people’s reality back to them and allows them to project their emotional and social responses in a focused and ‘safe’ fashion. The images or ‘codes’ included in this activity were co-produced by experts by experience from Govan Community Project’s Food for All Group in collaboration with Martha Adonai Williams and with illustrations by Kaitlin Chan.