Over the last six months we have been working with young peer mediators from Maesteg and Ynysawdre Comprehensive School and have produced a DVD called Peer Mediation in Practice. This film is a training resource for young people who want to become peer mediators and an information resource for anyone who is interested in Peer Mediation. Peer Mediation is a process where pupils who have been trained in conflict resolution facilitate resolving disputes between two people or small groups.
Zenda Caravaggi, the Restorative Justice in Schools Co-ordinator in Bridgend (Bridgend Youth Offending Team), initiated the production of the DVD. Zenda has set up Peer Mediation schemes in different Comprehensive Schools across Bridgend and has trained many young people.
On the DVD young Peer Mediators talk about the process and their experiences:
” We help them to see the problem and to work it out for themselves.”
“We create a safe environment and guide them.”
” They come to us rather than getting teachers involved.”
” We are learning skills which we can use outside school.”
“We learnt how to ask open questions, the rules of Peer Mediation and how to stay safe.”
” It makes you more self-aware.”
” It does give you a real thrill when you helped two people resolve their conflict.”
“It is such an important scheme to have, the success rate is phenomenal.”
The young people in the project also developed a drama – ‘Through the Hoop’ – which shows the conflict between two basketball players and how they manage to resolve it with the help of two Peer Mediators at their school.
This project was funded by The Bridgend Youth Offending Team, Bridgend County Borough Council, Cymorth and The Arts Council of Wales.