Update

Outreaches: REPACTED Magnet Theatre Troupe has been involved in the normal theatre outreaches in the community and the prisons. With the introduction of new magnet theatre sites in the community the number of the outreaches is increasing. Condom distribution and uptake of services is the increase. REPACTED organized one youth symposium and ten skills demonstration forums in the community and at the Nakuru Players Theatre. Weekend Six aside football tournament have been a great source of information sharing among the youth in the low income community.

Tae kwon do tournament: On the 7th of February 2009, Repacted Kenya hosted a Tae kwon do tournament at the Menengai social hall. Youth from various clubs and estates in and around Nakuru and invitees from as far as Nairobi took part in the event. The judges and referees were sourced from local clubs and the Kenya Tae kwon do Association. It followed a basic knock out format to speed up proceedings.

The event attracted a remarkable number of young people, (Male 212 female 117) mostly fans and friends of the competing clubs, and also registered a sizeable turnout of actual competitors who sought to showcase their talent. This provided a great platform to talk about the abuse of drugs among the youth, abstinence and correct, consistent, condom use when it comes to STIs and HIV/AIDS prevention. Two skits, one on the risks of having multiple sexual partners and another on the effects of illicit drugs on people in sport were presented. Although both were hilarious comedies, there was great response from those gathered to the message being put across. There was also a condom demonstration away from the main arena which proved quite popular.

The only disappointment was the lack of VCT facilities because some among the crowd requested the service. It is a notable development that CT has been embraced by the youth as a tool in the fight against HIV/AIDS.

International arts day: 17th Feb 09 the world celebrated the International Arts Day, Theatre or performing arts has been one of our core main tools of communication with the community, with an aim of addressing community concerns in a more interactive and participatory manner. We use different forms of art to reach out to the target audience.

Arts like theatre, murals and puppetry have been very instrumental in bringing about positive behavior change hence reduction of stigma associated with HIV, increased access to condoms reproductive health services and prevention of mother to child transmission of HIV. Earlier this year during the Madaraka day celebrations several media personalities, performing artists in their own right were arrested for staging a unique form of peaceful protest which involved T-shirts branded with a special message. Therefore art as proven to be the best tool of addressing the issues of democracy, constitutionalism, transparency and accountability among the political elites. The use of peace tiles in children’s homes is proving to be one of the most effective tools of educating the children on HIV and AIDS related issues. Repacted did a special outreach to commemorate the day by doing community theatre outreaches.

Valentines Day: While lovers and those purportedly in love everywhere were celebrating the day set aside for cupid and his arrows Repacted and other youth serving organizations held and event dubbed Valentines and the red ribbon. The main purpose was to show love to those infected and affected and even those in the fight against the AIDS scourge.

At the Nyayo garden Repacted comedians and Repacted’s MC Jex joined members of the community during the CCK chukua hatua community outreach road show. Repacted comedians rocked the house with their comedy styling. MC Jex impressed with his solo rap on peace and unity.

The open MIC The open Mic and the DJ competitions are just around the corner stay tuned for information. The event will take place in Nakuru Kenya bringing together local talents from the community. The young people compose songs on HIV and AIDS related issues. 

\\

updates

REPACTED BLOGGERS                                                                 WENDY AND MSHALE

This year has begun with much promise. In the first week of business REPACTED Kenya held five day capacity building training of all the 30 members who attended. The capacity assessment meetings evaluated the organization ability to move to NGO status by mid 2009. The members and office holders reviewed the past years trials and achievements before setting goals for the coming months. It also provided an opportunity for the members to bond and exchange ideas on the different project planned or already underway.

A significant step has been made this month, moving into a bigger office at the Nakuru Player’s Theatre has improved REPACTED Kenya’s profile and capacity to operate more professionally and attract more donor to fund the organization youth activities. Spacious and secure, it houses a reception area, operations centre, accounting office and, a new initiative, a youth information centre where youth from the community can come to access IEC material on reproductive health, HIV/AIDS, Drug abuse etc…

Wendy Cross from NextAid paid REPACTED Kenya a visit. She came to learn more about the organization and to assess its capacity. Wendy held a full day media based M & E training for REPACTED. Narrative reports tend to be two dimensional but through the use of media a more detailed and personal input can be infused in a report sent to a donor. Equipment such as flip cameras are cheap to acquire and easy to use. Making brief, well shot and accurately edited videos can tell a story and make a significant impact on the recipient. With proper lighting and good composition digital photos can also be used in reporting and keeping records to great effect. Both of these options can be sent over the internet making delivery easier compared to tapes, CDs and hard copy printouts. To avoid taking too much time uploading videos and pictures should be compressed or placed in a zipped folder. Wendy was surprised by the enthusiasm of the members and their interest in the various forms of media available to them.

REPACTED MAGNET THEATER MEMBERS GOING FOR AN OUTREACH. “STAY ALIVE”

After a long break REPACTED Kenya finally resumed outreach activities. There were a few magnet theatre practitioners taking to the field for the first time and their performance was commendable and beyond all expectations. The communities visited responded well and participated fully in the discussion, a few of the stepping forth to take up roles in the skit. Information on Reproductive health is fast seeping into their minds judging from the responses members of the audience gave to the slew of questions posed. At a new site in Free area, the numbers mobilized were impressive and the reception good if not great.

REPACTED MEMBERS TAKING A BREAK FOOTBALL TIME, SKILLS DEMONSTRATION FORUM

This year it was resolved that members’ blogs will be updated on a weekly basis. Topics discussed are to be drawn from key questions posed by community members during past outreaches along with personal issues they are itching to articulate.

The Year 2007 what a year….

We never thought we will make it to 2008 it was clear we were headed for a mass genocide, greater than Rwanda. Those were the REPACTED member’s words during the end year meeting at the Nakuru Players Theatre.

After the 27th December 2007 disputed presidential elections results in Kenya, just before the violence in Nakuru REPACTED team members were assembled at the Nakuru Players Theatre discussing how to reach out to the victims of the post elections skirmishes in Njoro, Kuresoi, and Molo through the Holistic Helping key person in Rift Valley Province Dennis Kimambo. Dennis had already mobilized some support from well wishers. Collins travelled to Kuresoi one of the most volatile area to find out how the situation was on the ground. In Kuresoi Collins met a friend of REPACTED in peace building and transformation Laurence Achami.

We left home in peace for the office at the theatre little did we know that going back home was going to be hell, and indeed it was, while we were busy combing the grassroots in other volatile regions hell broke loose in Nakuru. It took each one of us hours to reach home instead of the usual few minutes. We spent weeks talking through phones since the local administration declared a night curfew for Nakuru residence.

We still possessed the spirit to solder on with our normal community theatre activities but this time in IDP camps what a challenge after some normalcy returned in the town. We could not do the normal community outreaches in the community because there were no audiences in the community and any noise was treated as a disturbance. We changed strategy and employed other forms of community outreach like video shows in the video dens, focused group discussions, and included peace messages in the normal health talks. Thanks to Sara Piot and Georgia Arnold of MTV Staying Alive for understanding the situation. The organization concentrated on one on one peer education sessions, educative video shows, and focused group discussions in the community. The work was very expensive and wanting especially the IDP outreaches, it was an emergency that needed an extra budget thanks to the APHIA II project rift valley for supporting the extra outreaches in the IDP camps.

Everything calmed down after signing of the peace deal by the two principals Mwai Kibaki and Raila Odinga led by Kofi Anan. During the conflict we realized one thing, the power of the internet social forums like the personal blogs which took over from the main stream media, the internet is a powerful tool of communication. We actively made a good use of the internet after the mainstream media was blacked out by the government. Most of us with internet enable phone could still communicate effectively and post news to the web for the world to read and get the real story. Thanks to David Sasaki Oso of the Raising Global Voices for the phone you left behind when you visited REPACTED the phone (Sony Ericsson W8 10i) played a serious role after Dennis was robed a phone in the skirmishes while on a night mission to saving two REPACTED members who were trapped in the war zone, we used the phone to take pictures.

We resumed our normal magnet theatre outreaches with mobile VCT. The organization through team work managed to mobilize a good number of community members to access the free counseling and testing. It is not normal to test more than 120 people in a day for four VCT counselors. with the grant from the Staying Alive Foundation and the Raising Global Voices, we did up to 16 magnet theatre outreaches in a month, weekly skills demonstration forums, two youth symposiums and two youth events, Along the year 2008 REPACTED managed to train 30 change agents and five youth leaders on leadership, peer education and the use of digital media-photography, video shooting, blogging and most current encouraging positive bloggers from the community. The organization through collaborative efforts managed to effectively and consistently reach out to 10,000 young people, distributed 30,000 male condoms.

We still have challenges in blogging since it is a new phenomenon to the community though it is picking up. Thanks to Eduardo Avila of Voices Bolivia for the workshop when you visited REPACTED. The bloggers still talk about some of the skills you shared during the workshop. The members agreed to do something about the content by introducing interactive blogging within the REPACTED community theatrical outreaches. Interactive blogging will be more of community magnet theatre style or “interactive theatre of blogging” ok great thinking lets wait for 2009 for more information. More positive bloggers will be introduced next year…ok.

Ok the year was a great year to the organization has Kimambo Dennis attended the international AIDS conference in Mexico meat one of my great friends of REPACTED Lova. Thanks again to the MTV Staying Alive Foundation for the great support. Dennis Kimambo and Esther Ogema also attended training in Zambia and James Karongo attended training in Tunisia thanks to Family Health International and National Organization of Peer Educators. Collins Dennis Oduor also attended the Citizen Media Summit in Hungary. All the trainings and the conferences boosted greatly the capacity of the organization from management, information communication technology, monitoring and evaluation, and leadership creation.

Although we got a lot of difficult in accessing the prisons…. shame to the bureaucracy … this year we managed to do 15 community theatre outreaches in the prisons. Sammy and Ongaro both prisons waders and Voluntary Counseling Testing-service providers made sure that through the welfare office we access the prisons. This time it was the other way round a good number of the prison waders accessed the VCT services. Youth open mic festivals, Miss and Mr. Red Ribbon and poa festivals were a great event for the youth, the youth love music and performing arts hence the festivals were a great success.

Way forward– The members agreed that next year will be a year of holistic service to the community. It will be the year of social change and transformation in all the programs. Through the spirit of teamwork REPACTED members are more than willing to bring about change we believe in and save the community from the social injustices by creating a healthy nation through creative arts and digital media. To cut the short story long wait for the year 2009…..

Thanks

REPACTED believes in the spirit of networking, collaboration and partnership we therefore would like to appreciate, the MTV Staying Alive Foundation, the Raising Global Voices Online, the Nakuru Players Theatre, APHIA II Rift Valley, Partners for Progress, Act Alive, Vices of Roses, National Organization of Peer Educators, ADRA Kenya and the National AIDS Control Council.

http://mcjex.blogspot.com/

Today 45 years on after Kenya attained indipedence i want to say kudos to this year, 2008 will always be memorable to REPACTED in January we were moving into the secon face of the Staying Alive funding period and we were delyed because of the violence that rocked this country ealier on.  This year a man with a Kenyan father was elected to the highest office in the world.

But that will be a story for another day today if cocus on Vincnt Omindi a rapper who found his way to REPACTED after the violence i encourage you to read his blog which is the ttle of this message i write it again here http://mcjex.blogspot.com/ REPACTED has helped him to move and get a good start after the violence after reading his blog today i am urging all of you to support REPACTED to help him record n album so that he can continue the good work that he is doing using music for change in our country. We are fundraising about $1500 t be able to get him to a studio to recod the album.

looking forwad to hearing from all of you.

Eduardo thanks from REPACTED

Hello good people i have to say that i am very happy that Eduardo visited in Kenya though iwas commited very far away from Nakuru, i have seen som of is tuition and guys are very helpfull for his help in talking to themm and helping the learn more about blogging, he had about 15 guys with him. Kudos alos good news one of the REPACTED members will be going to Albania later this year hope some GBV guys are there so that he can learn more also.

report

                       REPORT ON THE DIGITAL MEDIA PROJECT.

Introduction

The following is the report of the digital media project supported Raising Global Voices outreach program. The project was implemented by REPACTED Kenya community based youth organization based in Nakuru Kenya. 

 

The project brought together a total of twenty seven community members with very little knowledge in digital media. The organization mobilized young people from the community to be introduced to the digital world. Among the twenty seven ten are young ladies form different background.

 

The fast step was to introduce the community members to the digital world by taking them through five day training on digital media and the growing world of internet which has reduced the world into a global village. At first we could not afford internet connection because of the cost of the internet connection, but with the competition in the mobile phone business in the country quite affordable modem are the market the only challenge is how to maintain the monthly fee for internet connection. 

 

The organization purchased one computer, one digital camera, one video camera, and one modem from Zain Kenya. Apart from the equipments the organization also conducted trainings on how to use the digital camera and photography, the organization of did training on bogging and basic computer skills training to the members of the community.

 

 The members of the organization who are theatre practitioners in the community also enjoy the project because they are using the equipments to capture photos during the community theatre outreaches. They have also done enough community theatre outreach videos the only challenge is how to blog the videos because it takes very log to upload a video clip here due to the slow internet connection.

 

The project is on the right truck and very faithful to the project objectives and goal and also the organization goals and objectives.

 

Challenges

 

  • The equipments are very few hence using them as a group is little challenging, one computer with about 17 trained bloggers and more community members are getting attracted to the centre.
  • Blogging idea is still a new phenomenon to almost all the community members and some group members and with the limited access to the computer because of the growing number of the interested community members is a little challenging.
  • Lack of proper skills in handling some computer programs and soft wears from the community members, one is trained today tomorrow all is gone you have to start again.
  • Some members of the community are physical challenged hence marking it to the centre requires some special program for them.
  • Though we got a train in video blogging, video blogging is still a big challenge not because of lack of skills because of the speed in the internet.   

 

If the above issues can be adequately addressed individually then we will able to increase the number of the Nakuru blogger sphere, and effectively improve internet communication within the community. For the physical challenged we need to move to them because they are located in one place, so by creating a digital media village in the community could improve the blogging spirit among the community members. 

 

We also need about six computers so as to satisfy all the new bloggers before the spirit of blogging goes down. If we buy one more video camera, and a digital camera we will be able to handle the big number of the new bloggers.

 

We will also organize more clinics on blogging around the community to sensitize the community on importance of digital media.    

 

For the internet connection we a serious challenge because the modem takes one computer at a time we are working on how to network the modem to serve more than two computers, but the service provider Zain say that it can not take more than two computers. We are also paying 50 USD per month, maintaining the cost may force the community to pay some small money the only problem is that we recruited from the slums where life is below 1 dollar a day.       

 

All in all we are moving on well and the bloggers are more than willing do more in the Nakuru blogger sphere, and bring out the power of blog compared to the main stream media.  Following the time line we are behind but progressing with the right pace and not just doing the citizen media for the sake of doing it. We want the best for the community and the culture to sustain itself.

Today in Magnet Theatre Outreach in Nakuru women prison

prisons magnet theatre

Key question: If you have TB are you HIV positive?

The synopsis

The performance was about a young man who coughs continuously and suspects he is HIV positive. The young man is encouraged by his girlfriend to go to hospital but the guy refuses. They have an argument that last for a few minutes until his friend calls the young man. His friend tells him not go to hospital because he will be tested for HIV, the friend tells him that people with TB are always tested for HIV, and if he does not go he will take him to a local medicine man for medication traditional medicine. The girlfriend insists that if does not go to hospital she will never talk to him and she will leave him for another man, and the friend says that if he does not go the medicine man he will get very sick and die. What should the young man do?

Magnet Theatre session

During the actual session the facilitator asks the women what should the young man do? Should he follow the friend or the girl friend? One woman called Akinyi said that he should listen to his girlfriend and seeks medical attention, may be he has T.B. But one of the women Mama Njeri said that the young man should go by the friend’s idea of seeing the medicine man and avoid the girl friend he can always get another one. But Susan one of the inmates said that it is possible to have TB and HIV so maybe he as HIV and the girl is also infected, but Akinyi said that TB and HIV are different and suffering from TB does not mean that you are HIV positive. When asked how she can advice the young girl and the man she stepped forward and demonstrated what the man should do. The session ended with the inmates suggesting the she goes to hospital before its to late, and TB is curable.

After the main session the inmates also did a performance on tribal clashes that rocked the country this year.

The group suggested we should take next time milk, sanitary, soaps and tissues for those women with kids.

After the prison outreach we gave magazines with thematic concern ARV, TB, and VCT.

Issue arising from the Magnet Theatre session today

  • Many women wanted to know more about TB, its mode of transmission, prevention and treatment.
  • We should increase outreach in prison.
  • We should bring VCT in prison.
  • The issues of ARV to sick come up.

.How many months it takes TB to be found in your body?

.Types of TB transmission

.Relation between TB&AIDS The above issues will be handled in the normal peer education session in prisons with the trained change agents in the prisons.

Today in Magnet Theatre Outreach in Hilton Nakuru

The synopsis

The performance was about a young woman who needs money to take a sick child to the hospital. In the neighborhood there are two young ladies who do commercial sex to earn a living. She approaches the two ladies for assistance; they tell her that the best way to get money and take the child to the hospital is to accompany them to a night, a place where she will get money, more money. At night they go the night club and the girl with the sick child is introduced to a man who offers to pay her 5000 Ksh for a whole night unprotected sexual intercourse or 500 shillings for sex with a condom. The other ladies are pushing her to accept or else they do away with her. Should she take the big offer and serve the child or the small offer and loose the friends and the child?

The magnet theatre session

After mobilizing the community to the magnet theatre site the facilitator introduced the charters profile while the audiences give them names. During the presentation the following issues come out from the audiences/spectators, some the audience members argued that the young girl should go for the big money because the life of the child is more important than her life, one of the audience members said that better loose the child because she can give birth to another child, John a member of the audience said that the young to use a Condon and tell the man her problem, when asked how to tell the man John stepped forward and demonstrated how he will do it, but the people said that it was difficult to convince a man with such mind set, Mama Merry said that the best thing for the young girl to do is to fund raise for the child treatment from well wishers and friends, one member of the community who goes by the name Musa said that he will lead the fund raising for the child because the young girls may end up with an STI from the man and may be HIV so before it happens he is willing to lead a fundraising. The sessions ended with one member of the audience taking the young girl out of the stage just to make sure that the girl does not change her mind.

After the outreach the members gave out 400 male condoms and held one on one talk with the community members at the site. IEC materials distributed posters, and magazines with the following thematic concern ARV and VCT.

Issue arising from the Magnet Theatre session today

  • Many people wanted to know more about malaria, its mode of transmission, prevention and treatment.

  • We found that prostitution is in the area especially amongst young women between the ages of 16 and 27.
  • Drug abuse is also one of their major concerns especially amongst to the youth where they abuse drugs like bhang.
  • It was also proposed by some community members that we have a session with them and teach them about health issues generally.
  • They also told us to take VCT to the site.

Key questions from the site include:

Why do people use condoms? Is it applicable to married people?

Does window period vary from one person to another?The above issues will be discussed in the next magnet issues.

New Participant Blogs

Learning to blog is a process that has taken a while with our community members and also REPACTED members at large but today we had another fantastic day where they all opened up blogspots blogs. I ask that we motivate them by visiting their sites. As we continue to promote the culture of participation, here are the blogs. I have to warn you most of them are still ‘young’ with their sites.

http://collinsyuro.blogspot.com
http://ongenge.blogspot.com
http://marynyambura.blogspot.com
http://teddykarare.blogspot.com
http://gitz-wazimu.blogspot.com
http://davjuma.blogspot.com
http://jameskarongo.blogspot.com
http://mcjex.blogspot.com
http://elseroketch.blogspot.com
http://jambonte.blogspot.com
http://mwailaw.blogspot.com
http://mshale.blogspot.com

Support these sites and let’s hope they will have the culture of blogging down very soon now as we surely encourage it. Finally we hit the ground running.