Graham Read ’15
Engaging Rural Communities in Providing Solutions to Environmental Problems and HIV/AIDS Education
My internship project involved work in two phases and locations in Kenya. The first phase consisted of training in the principles of Magnet Theater by REPACTED, a theater organization based in Nakuru, Kenya. During our work with REPACTED, we learned about cultural issues, myths and beliefs associated with HIV/AIDS, clean water use, basic sanitation and other topics. Later, we wrote rough skits and performed these skits around Nakuru with the aid of REPACTED’s actors. In the second phase, we traveled to Kuria Province, Kenya, and worked with Mwangaza, a youth group based in the town of Masaba. There, we assisted Mwangaza with their performances, as we did with REPACTED, and established a clear method of data collection, including pre- and post-performance surveys and demographic details, which will be used by Mwangaza in the future. This project helped me learn about the cultural nuances of issues that I had only thus far addressed scientifically, and helped me understand how important the local community can be in driving change within any society. This should be useful information for me in my global health and health policy studies, as it gives me local perspective on global issues.
REPACTED Kenya, Mwangaza Youth Group, Kenya
Mahiri Mwita, Lecturer, Princeton Institute for International and Regional Studies