Community Street Theatre as a Tool for Interventions on Alcohol Use and Other Behaviors Related to HIV Risks
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This paper presents data on the role and implementation of street theatre as a communications technique for HIV behavioral interventions in low income slum communities in Mumbai. Second, we situate the uses of street theatre as a social intervention strategy within a long history of outdoor drama as entertainment and social action in India. Street theatre with accompanying activities was a central element of the RISHTA project’s communications strategy in communities in Mumbai, designed to deliver tailored risk reduction messages to married men who were involved in extramarital relationships. The paper presents examples of the contents and delivery of alcohol risk reduction messages through street plays that were developed and performed by actors from low income communities. The paper situates street plays as part of the domain of prevention strategies, which can be effective in reducing HIV risks, including those related to alcohol use.
KeywordsStreet theatre Interventions Alcohol Risk reduction HIV/AIDS Amateur performers
The authors wish to acknowledge the contributions of the CORO street performers and the many RISHTA Project field workers, whose tireless toiling in the study communities contributed much to the community-based intervention efforts. We also extend special thanks to Dr. Jay Schensul, who invited us to write this paper, and Dr. Stephen Schensul, PI of the RISHTA Project. The activities and data described in this paper are all based on the Indo-U.S. Collaborative Project funded by the National Institute for Mental Health (USA), Grant 1RO1-MH64875.
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