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 Reference Sheet E 

Resilience Star game


Prepare a Resilience Star game kit in advance:


  • A bicycle tyre that has 11 flexible ropes attached to it. The inside of the tyre is covered with strong textile or plastic.

  • A watermelon.

  • 12 T‑shirts: 11 have the resilience dimensions written on them (one dimension per T‑shirt) and one has the word “hazard” on it. If T‑shirts are not available, prepare 11 cards with resilience dimensions written on them (one dimension per card) and a card with the word “hazard”.


  • Welcome participants and ask them to sit in a circle. Wait until at least 12 participants are present.

  • Introduce yourself as the facilitator, explain the purpose of your visit, and ask each participant to briefly share their name and background.

  • Explain resilience and its dimensions, then play the game.

 Play the game 

The game is a 15‑minute tool to illustrate resilience. 

  • Ask for 12 volunteers and give them T‑shirts to wear or the cards to hold. The 11 “dimension” volunteers should stand in a circle.

  • Place the bicycle tyre in the middle of the circle. It has 11 flexible ropes attached to it.

  • Ask each of the volunteers to hold one rope so that all the ropes are tight.

  • Explain that the bicycle tyre represents the community, and the ropes are the several dimensions of resilience.

  • Go to each “dimension” and briefly explain what that dimension means.

  • Now bring in the volunteer with the “hazard” T‑shirt or card and ask them to stand in the centre of the circle. Be sure that all “dimension” volunteers hold their ropes tight.

  • Ask the “hazard” volunteer to drop the watermelon from a height of one meter onto the tyre, which represents the community.

  • The intended effect is that the tyre starts to fall due to the impact of the watermelon, but then bounces back up again to its original position. Ask the participants what they observed.

  • Explain that the vertical movement of the tyre (community) is the outcome perspective: when we talk about resilience, one of the key ideas is that communities recover quickly. However, it is almost impossible to measure this dimension. Therefore, if we want to measure or reinforce community resilience, we need to look at the ropes: how tight are the 11 ropes? This is referred to as the functional perspective.

  • Now ask the “dimension” volunteers to loosen the ropes. Ask the “hazard” to drop the melon again.

  • Intended effect: The community bounces back more slowly but stays in a lower position (having the weight of the watermelon on it). Ask the participants what they observed.

  • Intended message: If the ropes are loose, the community does not bounce back fully. If the ropes are tight, the community bounces back better. Therefore, to strengthen resilience, we need to work on tightening the ropes (strengthening the dimensions).

You can also go through each dimension one by one without the Resilience Star game, using the explanations and examples listed earlier in this manual. Ask participants how they understand each dimension: What does “connectedness” mean to you? Before proceeding further, participants should have a good understanding of the 11 dimensions. 

See the cheat sheet: Discussing the Dimensions

Sheet E Photo Workshop participants in M

Workshop participants in Myanmar play the resilience game.

Photo- Samadhi Marr, Banyaneer Consulting”

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