Author: Theatre for a Change

Tuning in to Change

Written by Ryan Borcherding, International Training Officer, Theatre for a Change We’re packed inside a small broadcasting studio in Malawi’s capital Lilongwe. It’s 6:59pm.  In a minute, we’ll hit the airwaves live.  The tension – the excitement – is palpable. Tisinthe! – meaning “Let’s Change!” – is the first of its kind in the world.  It’s a show that features interactive radio drama, which lets people become characters in the drama they hear. Aside from being entertaining, this interaction serves to address a major challenge in the world of development:  how to translate knowledge into behavior change? Tisinthe! aims at improving the sexual and reproductive health of women and girls in Malawi, with a specific focus on preventing HIV.  Most Malawians know how HIV is spread, and how it can be prevented, yet Malawi still has the 9th highest HIV prevalence rate in the world. How can a radio show help to bridge this gap between knowledge and behavior?  How can it go beyond just giving out information, and actually influence what people do? By design, …

Access to Justice: A Change is Going to Come

Written by Catriona Cahill, Development Officer, Theatre for a Change In 2012, the United Nations Population Fund revealed that around 34% of the 52,000 female sex workers living in Ghana have had an unprotected sexual encounter with the police against their will. Just over one-third of all women in Ghana have experienced physical violence; the majority of women report that it is most often a sexual partner committing the crime. With sexual violence already prevalent throughout society, just imagine how it is intensified within the industry of sex work where women feel they must necessarily subordinate themselves to their clients. Yet, with only 9% of female sex workers in Ghana reporting a non-discriminatory standard of treatment from the police, it is no wonder that only half of them would consider seeking justice after suffering any form of abuse. Statistics such as this make a strong case for advocating for the rights of these women: the right to report abuse, the right to access justice and the right to live a life free from fear. The current …