Child club network in Dailekh participated in a unique opportunity– learning to act and putting up a play. Nine children from child clubs, three girls and six boys learnt acting from local artist Ganesh Gautam recently. Children were busy learning various aspects of learning for seven days after which they decided to put up a street drama. Acting teacher Ganesh helped them script a play against child marriage.
Child marriage is a growing concern in Dailekh district in mid-west Nepal. One hears of incidences of children being involved in marriages more often than not. A survey is underway to determine the numbers of child marriages occurring in the district. A report is expected to be launched soon.
Save the Children’s Sahayatra project partner SOSEC supported in organizing the workshop and the street drama, which was staged in Lalikada, Piladi, Sheri, Khadkawada, Rakam Karnali and Dullu Municipality. The story titled Putali ko Bihe focused on a young girl and how early marriage hampers her normal childhood and education. The children inserted messages of other negative consequences like physical and psychosocial stress on a girl. Parents, teachers and community were actively involved in spread knowledge about child marriage, national laws and act against child marriage during the drama.
Local trader Bhadra Bahadur, who was in the audience during the street drama performance said, “Street drama is a good medium through which we can spread awareness and to get rid of child marriage,”
The drama had some immediate effects – Engagement ceremony of a tenth grader from Piladi VDC was cancelled and a marriages of a 15-year-old boy and 14-year-old girl was stopped by the community.