Monday, 28 February 2011

Posion Into Medicine

We held a soiree to raise awareness about the work that's ongoing between ourselves and Theatre for a Change. Matt delivered a paper and some of the Level 3 Applied Theatre students performed excerpts from Poison Into Medicine, the verbatim play about AIDS/HIV which they're taking to Malawi at the end of next month.

We had several key guests from The Terence Higgins Trust, Save the Children as well as support from a number of faith charities. The Strawberry Hill Overseas Concern Charity gave us a cheque for £2,000 towards the purchase of MADSOC - the community venue in Lilongwe which we hope will provide a base for Tfac's ongoing activities.

In the Q & A there was quite a lot of hinted suggestions that our work might find opposition in a Catholic institution and also amongst faith groups within Africa itself. Is one of our aims agitation? It's not, but neither is it adherence to any formal doctrine.

As with all our work in this field the debate needs to be performed rather than intellectually argued. The whole purpose of the forum is to allow an exploration of action - to understand the physical and emotional consequences both of intervention and non intervention. In Malawi this is directly linked to issues of gender assertiveness and HIV prevention. The projects are driven by a belief that local solutions are the only ones that can sustain. The only ideology is pragmatism and the understanding that an open and rehearsed debate will offer the right solutions to enable a community to thrive.

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