Radio drama is becoming one of the most popular and effective strategies being used by Savanna Trust to engage Zimbabwean citizens on various issues that affect them on a day to day basis. From 2015 to 2016, the organisation has produced 23 radio drama episodes that have enabled people to dialogue on such topical issues as gender based violence, peace building, human rights and governance.
In March 2017 the organisation added to its radio programming another worrisome issue of violence against children. Research has shown that many Zimbabwean children are among the most vulnerable sections of society. Vulnerability to child abuse increases due to factors such as gender, disability, orphan hood, poverty and lack of parental care. Children are at risk of being hurt physically, sexually, psychologically and through neglect. As part of its contribution to the eradication of violence against children, Savanna Trust, through support from the Embassy of Switzerland is implementing a project that is aimed at enhancing awareness and dialogue among Zimbabweans on child protection and their rights. The project uses interactive radio drama and discussions to expose and challenge harmful social, economic, religious and cultural practices that promote violence and abuse of children.
In this project Savanna Trust is producing 15-minute radio dramas that are being aired on Radio Zimbabwe. In this first phase, 5 episodes will be produced. The broadcast of each drama episode will be followed by a live discussion on the issues highlighted in the drama. Experts on children’s rights issues engage with the issues being raised while listeners are afforded an opportunity to participate in the process through live phone ins, WhatsApp and SMS. Each episode tackles a specific child protection issue inspired by real life experiences of children. The identified thematic areas to be tackled in the 5 episodes include, early and forced child marriages, child sexual abuse, neglect, lack of identity documents identity documents and child labour.