Addressing sex through drama
According to the Department of Basic Education's last survey, 49 600 students had fallen pregnant across all grades in 2008. Studies show that countries that include sex education in their school's programme have lower teenage pregnancy rates.
Unfortunately the majority of pupils in South Africa don't receive sex education. Especially in schools where teachers are old and often not comfortable talking about sex, teenagers miss the opportunity to get informed and to protect themselves against HIV and Aids. So how do you make teachers and pupils feel comfortable talking about sex?
The Drama for Life (DFL) Mvuso School and Community Education Pilot Project that runs from 9 July 2012 until 1 September 2012 seeks to enhance the capacity of 12 community theatre practitioners and 10 school teachers from 10 selected schools in Soweto to address issues of sex, relationships and HIV and Aids through Applied Theatre and Drama.
After a one-week intensive short course at the DFL programme, hosted by Wits University, the 22 facilitators will lead projects with children in their schools and communities that address above-mentioned topics using the newly learned methodologies of Applied Theatre and Drama. In seven weeks they produce a theatrical performance with the children participating in the project that will be showcased at the annual DFL Sex Actually Festival on 1 September 2012.
The primary objective of the project is to catalyse dialogue, reflection and action around issues of HIV and AIDS infection and risk behaviours and simultaneously building compassionate community responses to the HIV and AIDS pandemic. The project aims to promote personal and interpersonal learning with the intention of bringing about positive behavioural change amongst the youth.
The Training week is running from the 9th - 13th of July, daily starting at 9am at the Goethe Institut. The final performances are scheduled for the 1st of September 10am at Power Park Sport and Recreation Hall in Soweto.
The project is an initiative by Drama for Life. DFL is a special programme at the University of the Witwatersrand that hosts an academic Applied Theatre and Drama programme, as well as several community projects.