Finding creative ways to prevent the pandemic from becoming a lasting crisis for children everywhere is our priority.
Doing Nothing is Not an Option
“Zvakanaka”! It is one my favourite words. It means “all good” in Shona. We learnt it in Mozambique sharing laughter with children affected Hurricane Idai. We are not able to perform in Mozambique right now. But doing nothing is simply not an option. There is more need for children to laugh and play than ever before.
We are lucky, innovation and creativity is in our blood. Laughter and play are still possible through a screen and Zoom is our new playground. Annabel, Sussie and Sufïta’s (in the picture above) are planning for our new programme in Mozambique. They are proof, play is possible anywhere.
The Power of Play
Children also love lighthearted humour and playfulness. It is how they engage with and understand the world. We have seen how moments of fun can change an uneasey situation into one that is full of conversation, connection and intimacy. We are using this approach to support girls in Mozambiques to learn about puberty and how their bodies work. It is also a way to provide respite and help keep them safe at this challenge time.
Humour and playfulness, when used appropriately, can help reduce embarrassment, secrecy and shame. It also helps to build trust. It is a way to reduce stigma and make sure girls can have better conversations about their bodies. This has big implications when it comes to supporting girl’s reproductive rights and wellbeing. By building the capacity of female Health-Workers to use play we can help to transform the lives of girls.
Laughter and play is possible in every part of daily life (even on Zoom). When it used to support children learning it is possible to create a world where girls (and boys) can truly be themselves and thrive.