First Workshop (Stephanie)

(Stephanie is a “guest blogger” from Occidental College -class of 2011. – in Rwanda for a month) 


Thursday, June 3, 2010
Today we finished our first set of workshops for a group affiliated
with a small NGO, called Play For Hope, which organizes soccer teams as an outlet for street kids. The group is made up men who have been on a soccer team together since they were young. On Tuesday, the first day of their workshop we discussed HIV/AIDS and STDs. It felt good to finally make a difference and teach. Yet what was so great about this group of men is how enthusiastic they were about the material and learning.

Amy and I were worried that the basics of HIV/AIDS would be
boring, however we forget that new material is always informative and interesting to those who are learning. It was great to also engage in discussions with the men. You could tell that people were actually learning and listening because they asked such good questions about the material. In comparison to teaching in the US, we felt that these men were much better listeners! It was also good to know that we were correcting misconceptions about HIV/AIDS, since many people do not know how it is transmitted, some people still believe that HIV can be transmitted simply through touch or even just association. Today our workshop was on teen pregnancy, alcohol and drugs, and nutrition.

Afterwards when we were getting feedback, it was good to hear that they thought they had learned a great deal after these two days and felt they had a brighter future now. It was good to start with this group because they were so energetic and entertaining, yet it was also hard because they were so enjoyable other groups may not seem as fun.

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