Interactive Theatre for Justice: An Advocacy Tool to Address Sexual and Gender Based Violence (SGBV).

Interactive Theatre for Justice: An Advocacy Tool to Address Sexual and Gender Based Violence (SGBV)

Addressing sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) requires a collective effort from everyone in the community. To eradicate SGBV, it is essential to educate the community on how to recognize signs of SGBV, understand referral pathways, address its harmful impacts, seek justice, and support survivors. Many survivors shy away from reporting incidents of SGBV due to stigma, lack of safe spaces, and victim-blaming, leading to silence and suffering. This not only harms individuals but also hinders community progress and growth.

Creating a safer society where everyone thrives is crucial. Youth Changers Kenya (YCK) actively engages in Sexual Violence education and advocacy by offering training sessions and fostering intergenerational dialogues to unpack the referral pathways for addressing SGBV. We strengthen the capacity of key community members like magistrates, county officials, religious leaders, police, chiefs, volunteers, gender officers, and community activists to address sexual violence effectively. We also work with girls and young women to help them understand the referral pathways for sexual violence.

In our ongoing efforts to promote a healthy, violence-free society, YCK recently organized a 5-day Interactive Theatre for Justice training for 18 young women from Nairobi, Kiambu, and Kakamega counties. The training was facilitated by the Theatre for a Change, Malawi, and the USA. It focused on using interactive theatre as an advocacy tool to address SGBV.

The young women learned about participatory advocacy, where important social issues are presented to policymakers through performances. Based on real-life experiences, they had a live performance showcasing the severe impacts of SGBV and highlighting the referral pathways available to support survivors. Additionally, they facilitated dialogues with community stakeholders on ways of addressing SGBV, providing support to the survivors, seeking justice, and contributing to positive change.

The young women found that the interactive theatre approach was valuable for their advocacy efforts. One participant shared, “I look forward to using theatre to advocate for change in my community. I am excited to share the skills I have acquired with other young people.”

Interactive theatre is a powerful tool that can change community narratives and attitudes, influencing the public and decision-makers. We are eager to see the positive changes it will bring as we continue to challenge harmful norms and address systemic issues of sexual violence.

By working together and supporting initiatives like these, we can create a safe and supportive society for all.

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