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Theatre for Peace Transforming Youth Lives

Thursday 31th May 2012

Nairobi, Kenya: Youth United for Social Mobilization (YUSOM), is a non-governmental and nonprofit organization, free from political, clans, religion and ethnic divisions, works with thousands of youth in Eastliegh, Nairobi, north-eastern Kenya, and throughout South- central regions in Somalia. YUSOM strives to create a future where youth are able to facilitate their own development in a competitive environment.

Throughout the start of April 16th 2012, young generation of boys and girls trained in drama acting, and production techniques for short awareness episodes in a theatre for peace programme have been staging a weekly 14 episodes of spectacular promenade pieces of theatre at the Mennonite fellowship centre in Eastlieght, Nairobi, Kenya.

The promenade pieces supported by KTI explored key issues affecting youth in Eastliegh, attributed by the youth trainees during 10 days of workshop. Youth spectators in each week’s gathering roughly exceed more than a thousand, most of them fanatical and passionate to watch at the thrilling show.

This ambitious theatre features a casting of 80 actors, including some 17 talented young drama actors and teachers trained in a previous drama production seminar by IREX programme in Eastliegh, and other young performers drawn from marginalized youth groups.

During the ground breaking gatherings, drama competitions are held as group winners each week won NAKUMAT voucher cards in a free and fair nominations made by special independent committee comprising of drama experts, journalists and intellectuals.

Najmo Mohamed Abdikarim one of the youths motivated female artists in Eastliegh said “Through the drama training and now on performing period, I gained a lot of critical thinking, exploration of experiences and sharing ideas with my newly introduced friends, taking me to a level that I will never forget in my life”. She said

Abshir Isse Samakab YUSOM coordinator said “We’ll be drawing on some astonishing youth talent to create an entertaining and moving show full of wit, energy, and all with a good culture of peace and brotherly.
Abshir added “This is a unique opportunity to see youths from Somali origin communities in Eastliegh at one place, with one motto and willingly moving forward”

“YUSOM would like to thank Kenya Transition Initiatives for funding the programme, without whom it would have not been possible to stage the dramas” said Farhan Hanshi YUSOM chairman speaking at the opening ceremony.

“The continuation of such entertaining, and significant programmes for youth idling sitting in Eastliegh will pave the way for well talented Youths to come out from our community and will also provide the perfect opportunity to us the youths to reflect an applicable future and send messages to other youth groups.

After each end of these weekly theatre performances youths come together, share personal life stories, learn more about their diverse backgrounds, get chances to express him/she herself, acquire quick critical thinking skills, interaction, dialogue,self-confidence on approaching etching issues through theatre performance poems, and songs.

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