Mthabisi Tshuma, Showbiz Correspondent
ARTISTES from Gwanda last week joined hands with the mining town’s civil society agency, Community Youth Development Trust (CYDT) as they held a roadshow to promote Sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) awareness.
SRHR are fundamental human rights that are currently being denied or restricted in many parts of the world and include issues like abortion, HIV and other STIs, maternal health and rights, contraceptive access, gender-based violence, discrimination and stigma.
As the country opens up after an indefinite lockdown, aforementioned cases have been on the rise and CYDT felt compelled to rope in artistes in order to realign people to ensuring their rights are respected.
Artistes including rapper Sbhevara, Kwaito musicians Khoi Khoi and Kadder took part in the initiative that also exposed how the public is starved of live performances.
CYDT information officer, Bongiwe Dube said they decided to work with artistes on the programme because of edutainment viability.
“To make the SRHR activities youth friendly, we invited local artistes to entertain the public. This is because artistes make activities vibrant rather than boring and also their good following attracts crowds.
“Young people are eager to learn more about their SRHR and its our wish to avail more SRHR sensitisation activities, especially in Matabeleland South remote areas. More work is still needed to change the attitude and behaviour of parents, most who still follow repressive traditional practices such as forcing their children into child marriages,” said Dube.
Dube added that it is worrying how some parents are still not comfortable discussing issues to do with adolescent sexual reproductive health rights with their kids. – @mthabisi_mthire