Implementing the good work of the world is never an easy thing. Missions emerge and are put forth that, when acted upon, become something slightly different, then different again in response to a donor base. The playwriting process is largely one of alchemy, whereby efforts and ideas are boiled down to their most fundamental truths. Through the collaborative process of theater, creating a play based on the work of an NGO offers an opportunity for the organization to examine its endeavors and dramatically articulate what all it is doing in the world. The process involves the exchange of information for perspective whereby members of the organization are interviewed about their work by an outsider who is better able to see the forest for the trees. It provides an opportunity to explore and to recognize that work with productions that can be featured at conferences or special events. Then, through the inherent marketing mechanism of producing theater, the play helps to draw additional interest in the NGO while enhancing its donor base. Often oral history projects accompany this effort, leaving a lasting legacy of the work being done at a particular time. An example of this is the play Darkness Lifting performed as part of Habitat for Humanity’s 25th Anniversary Celebration.
Collaborations with NGO’s can also serve the more practical function of furthering the work of the organization. Theater can provide a dramatic and memorable means of imparting a message to the people the organization is trying to reach with that message.
An example of this work is the series of plays performed in Fiji to help combat type 2 diabetes, the How to Beat Diabetes Theater Project, commissioned by the International Diabetes Federation.
For only travel expenses, I will hold an initial meeting with any organization to begin articulating their work and to describe the process involved in moving the writing forward. For more information please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.