PVI, in collaboration with Raising Voices, the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, and the Uganda Network on Law Ethics and HIV/AIDS (UGANET), produced an innovative 33-episode radio drama series on intimate partner violence against women (VAW).
The radio drama is based on Raising Voices’ SASA! Together methodology; a community mobilization approach to prevent VAW by facilitating reflection and action around power, safety, and violence. The program is structured in four phases: Start, Awareness, Support, Action, and is delivered through a network of community activists using a range of activities. The radio drama – ‘Together with Gloria’ – acts as a ‘booster’ to strengthen program reach and impact on preventing violence against women.
SASA! Together is one of the few methodologies with demonstrated impact on preventing intimate partner VAW at the community level. Because of this robust evidence base, it is currently being used by over 80 organizations in 35 different countries, with further demand to be scaled up. Radio therefore provides a valuable platform; radio ownership is high – in Uganda it is 87% – and in low-income countries is often higher than TV or smartphone ownership due to its affordability and accessibility. It’s also a valuable tool in times of outbreaks and lockdowns such as during COVID or Ebola, where face-to-face activities and community work may be limited.
‘Together With Gloria’ is an innovative ‘show within a show’ format that follows our protagonist, Gloria, as she starts a new talk show on her local radio station to discuss issues around gender-based violence. Gloria’s show features guests such as SASA! Together community activists and local religious leaders, and guests calling in to tell their stories and voice their opinions. In addition to Gloria’s show, the drama explores Gloria’s personal life; her relationship, her family dynamic and pressures, and her workplace conflicts.
PVI used existing material developed for the SASA! Together programme to create characters and storylines for the drama. Working with a local production team, and utilizing the popular format of a talk show, the drama takes into consideration the sensitive subject matter to carefully script dialogue and discussion to deliver key messages in an entertaining and engaging way.
The first broadcast of ‘Together With Gloria’ was in the Western Ugandan district of Kasese in the local language of Rukonjo, between June 2022 and February 2023. The drama was played on three popular local radio stations, with each station broadcasting a new episode each week, with every episode played three times to maximize listenership. The scripts for the drama will act as a ‘template’ that can be adapted and translated for other regions and contexts as needed.
The show has been well-received by listeners in Kasese, who regularly called the stations to give their feedback:
“People should keenly listen to [Together With Gloria] because they are teaching me some important lessons as a teacher and leader.”
“This show energizes my daughters at home!”
“I used to do my things at home alone but since I started listening to these episodes, now I plan with my wife and children.”
“I have learnt that everyone deserves respect, irrespective of their gender.”
“Thanks for the program, working together is important. It’s my prayer that I run my family like Gloria.”
The London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine is currently analyzing the reach, the implementation process, and the perceptions of change from the radio drama series. These research results will be available later in 2023.
For more information on ‘Together With Gloria’ and our work using radio, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Listen to the first episode of ‘Together With Gloria’, recorded in Rukonjo, below: