The theater "Role Of Youngsters In Community" presented scenes from around colleges and universities picturing how a student in youth can sometimes be blinded by what they see in other students as perfect, and want to become exactly like them, but losing their uniqueness. As a result, they end up constantly comparing, adapting wrong habits, and taking extreme routes that even leads to suicide.
These issues are quite prevalent both rural and urban cultures of Sindh. And as the independence day was a very major event for all Pakistani youth who were seen celebrating hugely, PEP thought it would be great to use this event to reach out to as many people, and especially the future of our country that is the youth.
The children's theater was prepared by Sir Munawar John who is leading the PEP CAP group. The children in this theater group are from the areas Mirpurkhas, Khowaja Goth, and Tando Ghullam Ali where PEP has its schools.
This theater was to help youth understand their purpose and responsibility as a Pakistani. The children performed theater throughout August, and later the children also did a theater on Early Marriage that was performed on independence day programme in Churches, Hyderabad Diocesan Office, Diocesan Institutions, and the Diocesan Hostels.
The churches supported the PEP theater project through donations and so can you!
When I was first told that I had to do a theater presentation on early marriage, I felt a need that this was important for me to do. I am 18 years old and I will be getting married soon. In my culture early marriage is the norm. And following this specific norm means doing the best thing for family.
But is it the really best thing for me?
What will happen if I get married at 18, and without knowing who my husband is?
I don't have any guarantee of how I might be treated. My in laws might ask me to leave my job, my studies. I might never see the result of the hard work we did for the women through Female Adult Literacy (FAL) education. I will have to adjust myself according to the ways of my husband, and in laws. This will take me further away from who I really am, and my identity. Therefore, I will lose a lot.
This is the story of many girls in rural and urban culture as well as around the world, who don't have a choice, and are sold through marriage, when they could be playing, reading, dancing, and teaching.
So, on my part, what is the best that I can do?
If through the women's theater, I can raise awareness about the consequences of early marriage, the next generation of girls will know. Girls like me who can't stand up to the norms of culture in this age can in future take stand for their daughters.
And the women in Women's Empowerment Programme have gathered together from all areas, of all ages, uniting together in one song, "Marriage is not for girls, let them shine."
The Women's Empowerment Groups are on the front lines to open the eyes of the community to the fate of early marriage. Through their theater they have projected that page of a girl's life, who after marriage loses her rightful freedom, and most of all, her childhood.
Early marriage can cost a girl her whole life.