Using Drama  to reduce New HIV infections and unintended pregnancies among adolescents and young people 

Prize Presentation to HIV/SRH Drama Competition first position - Government Secondary School, Byazhin, Abuja. Photo Credit: Pem Musa

Prize Presentation to HIV/SRH Drama Competition first position – Government Secondary School, Byazhin, Abuja.
Photo Credit: Pem Musa

 

The Grand finale for the drama competition held at Government Secondary School, Wuse on 7th November, 2018. Earlier in the competition, secondary schools in each of the Area Council had competed, leading to the emergence of top three schools from each council who further competed for the grand prize of N200,000 worth of school books, equipment and/or mini project. The six schools who competed were- GSS Jabi, MSS Maitama, GSS Kubwa, GGSS Dutse, GSS Byazhin and GSS Wuse.

 

Nigeria is a country with one of the highest rate of HIV prevalence globally. HIV prevalence among adolescents aged 15–19 in Nigeria is estimated to be 2.9% and 3.2% among young people aged 20–24. In the NDHS survey in 2012, 23% of girls aged 15–19 were either mothers or pregnant with their first child. Nigeria has acted on its policy commitments, making it one of the few countries to implement near-nationwide CSE (UNESCO 2010). Interestingly, Nigeria is one of few countries that report having translated national policies on school-based comprehensive sexuality education (CSE) into near-nationwide implementation as a means of sensitizing adolescents and young people about HIV prevention and reproductive health.

 

Giving her opening remark, the Director, Health Unit FCT Education Secretariat, MsVictoria Aleogena stated that the most important resource we have as a nation is the young people. “If the young people do not learn about their importance in nation building, the country cannot develop”, she added.

 

She made the students promise that they’ll all strive to be the best they can be. Drama according to her “is a very important tool in learning, especially because of the didactic messages therein”. She advised the students to be focused, face their studies and prepare to take over from the adults.

 

As a result of the drama competition, some of the students who had little or no knowledge of HIV prevention and pregnancies had the opportunity to acquire it:

“…I am very glad about the competition. There are some things I didn’t know before that I now know. Especially about how a positive person can still live a healthy life” Chidera, 15 years, male.

 

“… Some of the dramas were very touching, it is sad that this is actually what is happening in our society today. The competition has shed more light on it. I hope that things will change” Salome, 15years, female.

 

“….I used to think that Education ends when teenage pregnancy happens. It is good to know that a young girl can still go on to achieve her dreams if such should happen to her especially if it wasn’t her fault like in a case of rape”  Amarachi, 18 years, Female

 

Amidst jubilation by the winning schools, Bem Alugh, Team Leader Individual and Community Capacity Strengthening for EVA thanked the schools for participating and reiterated the provision of the timely and accurate

Announcing the winners at the Grand Finale of the Drama Competition on HIV/SRH. Photo Credit: Bayo Olanrewaju Ewuola

Announcing the winners at the Grand Finale of the Drama Competition on HIV/SRH.
Photo Credit: Bayo Olanrewaju Ewuola

SRH information to young people as an important element for the protection of their future. He also encouraged the students to imbibe the lessons they had learnt and encouraged them to be peer influencers to the other students who weren’t present.

 

Government Secondary School Byazhin, Government Girls Secondary School Dutse and Government Secondary School Wuse in the 1st, 2nd and 3rd positions will later be presented with school equipment and books worth two hundred thousand naira only; one hundred and fifty thousand naira and one hundred thousand naira only respectively.

 

The HIV prevention and reproductive health sensitization is contributing to the implementation of National HIV Strategy (2017-2022) and National HIV campaign being implemented in 4 states of the Federation and the Federal Capital Territory.

 

Written By: Bayo Olanrewaju Ewuola

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