The Skit

At the end of September, the Teen Girls Club was officially inaugurated in the village of Bedaabour, Ghana.  It was a tremendous celebration that ended with one of the most powerful skits I’ve seen. The girls wrote and acted out the story of the challenges and the choices they face as they approach puberty and struggle to stay in school. It was a skit that angered and saddened and motivated us all to do more.

The skit began with a teacher and young student talking in the classroom. The teacher invited the female student on his lap to be his girlfriend, saying money would be no object. He could take good care of her. The student replied that she already had a boyfriend, but would bring him her friend to be his girlfriend. Her friend could use some extra financial support.  So the student goes off to find her friend.

 

She encounters two girls and shares with the elder one the teacher’s proposition. The first girl rejects the offer, saying she wants no part of the arrangement. She will focus on her studies, even if it is a struggle. She walks away.  But the younger girl gave it some thought. She really needed some extra money so she could afford school supplies to stay in school and earn her education, and the teacher could offer that. So she agreed to go and meet him.

 

The young girl goes to the teacher, and the teacher gives her spending money, then asks her to come to his house where “he’ll give her an education in the bedroom that she won’t get in school.”

A few weeks later, the girl falls ill. She stops doing her homework and her chores and feels sick all the time. Her parents question her behavior and finally discover that she must be pregnant. They all begin yelling at her for what she has done.

The girl’s parents send the police to the teacher’s home, but the teacher denies ever having met the girl.  The police leave.

The girl’s friend – the one who first introduced her to the headmaster – goes to the teacher’s home and convinces him that he must take responsibility. He knows this is his fault. The teacher finally concedes and tells the friend to send the pregnant girl to him.

When the girl arrives, the teacher gives her the pill. It’s not clear what the pill’s intended effects are, but we learn that the teacher has purchased it from the pharmacy because it is marked “not safe for pregnant women.” He tells her to take it and she swallows the whole thing.

The teacher is outraged! He immediately begins scolding her saying she should have taken only half the pill – he needed the rest for someone else!

The dose is too much.

The girl dies.

The skit then cuts back to the families. The pregnant girl’s family is ashamed of what has happened.

Fast forward a few years, and the audience learns that the girl said no to the teacher’s proposal and who did not take a boyfriend while she was in school is able to complete her education and goes on to become a doctor! She brings pride to her family.

The moral of the story according to the girls telling it: stay in school and away from the causes of pregnancy, no matter what a man may offer you.

This skit was written by the girls and performed in front of the entire community – men and women, teachers and elders, children of all ages. No one was shocked by the premise & all present agreed that it was a good moral for the girls to learn.

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