SWAN Christian College will present Shalom House with a cheque for almost $40,000 to go towards the drug rehabilitation facility.
The money was raised through ticket sales of the show Anyman, which was produced by Shalom House in conjunction with the College’s theatre company Fenceline Theatre and shown during the Perth Fringe World festival.
The script for the show was based on Shalom House chief executive Peter Lyndon-James’ book Tough Love and was performed by residents from the facility – as well as Swan Christian alumni and staff, and directed by Jane Hille.
Mr Lyndon-James said the money would go towards a new facility for Shalom House.
“At the moment we are looking at purchasing a building to house our office, works and use as a headquarters or hub,” he said.
“This money will go towards a deposit to purchase that property, once we find a suitable facility.
“Our residents, Jane (the play director) and everyone involved in the play have worked extremely hard over a period of eight months – not to win an award or get the accolades – but to make a difference, bring a message of change and be part of the solution, so we are thrilled about the success of the production.”
He said he never thought the production would be so successful.
“When Jane initially approached me about doing this play, we never imaged it would get this big, that it would get to be a part of the Fringe festival and least of all, that it would win the Fringe World Theatre Award, especially with over 70 per cent of the cast being former addicts undergoing a recovery program,” he said.
“We are happy to see the play is still a success and the momentum is still very much there. We recently made the play available online and in the two weeks that it’s been up it has had over 300 downloads. That’s more families being equipped to deal with their loved ones in addiction and more eyes opened to what their addiction is doing to those closest to them.”
Mr Lyndon-James didn’t rule out plans to bring the show back to Fringe in 2019.
“There are no specific plans to do the show at the next Fringe in 2019, but we wouldn’t rule it out completely either,” he said.
“At the moment we are looking at the best ways of reaching out to high school students to get the message out there and the play may be one of the tools used.”
College principal Adrian Scott said he was pleased the college could contribute to helping the organisation.
“We are very pleased to be able to contribute to the efforts of an organisation that brings hope and restoration to the lives and families affected by addiction,” he said.
“It’s a matter that devastates many in our community and I am glad that we were able to support the fundraising endeavours towards this cause.”
Ms Hille said the message behind the production was very important.
“This collaboration has presented our college alumni with the opportunity to be involved in original contemporary theatre which shares an important message of awareness and social change with the community,” she said.