Did You Know?
•That the government puts HIV in condoms to kill off undesirable people? (link)
•That sharing a spoon with someone with HIV will infect you? (link)
•That you should do your laundry separately from family members that are HIV+? (link)
•AIDS is an animal that kills you in your sleep? (link)
•That AIDS is a curse from God? (link)
•That having sex with a virgin will cure AIDS? (link)
•If you are married you cannot contract HIV from your spouse? (link)
•Washing your genitals with bleach after sex will stop HIV transmission? (link)
No. You probably didn’t. Because you have been educated on some of the basic truths of HIV/AIDS. And you already know that none of this is true.
But here in internet-land we have access to information, and most of us aren’t living under the thumb of taboo, myth, and social rules that prohibit us from engaging in open dialogue about sexually transmitted disease. (Links above all reject these claims or contain interesting discussion about these misconceptions from various points of view.)
You and I, we are lucky. We simply weren’t born in a place where education is hard to come by. Sickness, disease, and death is as commonly observed in the day to day life of most rural and impoverished Africans as funny youtube videos and photos of cats are to most of the rest of us.
As you can see, there is a huge disparity between fact and myth. Which is why using drama, storytelling, magic and puppetry to teach the truth about HIV & AIDS is a logical step. The power of myth has undisputedly affected those who live in East Africa. There is an intrinsic cultural paradigm that slows down the distribution of facts when they are not presented in a way that can be understood.
This is why Project: Hand Up! is so necessary and effective.