Sama conducted a day-long workshop with young girls on the issues of sexual reproductive health rights. The workshop was conducted in the Mandar Block, Ranchi, on 16 May, 2019. The workshop was conducted by resource person Subhadra Kamath along with the team of Sama. Being a Muslim majority village, most of the 32 participants were from the Muslim community, while a few were Hindus too.
During the workshop, the various issues relating to sexual and reproductive rights were brought to the forefront through the method of storytelling. The participants gave shape to a ‘fictional cartoon character’. Participants connected the dots together of the story from their own lived experiences. Through this exercise they made a story of ‘young girl’ who is experiencing physiological changes in the body, getting attracted towards boys and exploring relationship with boyfriends. The fictional story depicted how a young girl goes through lot of confusion in context of physiological changes, in relation to selection of partner, and kind of partner she desires and reasons behind it. This exercise has given created space to discuss how one can have desire to explore relationship more than one person. One of them added very important aspect by saying, ‘She likes first one because he is smart and handsome… He speaks well…… Second one cares a lot for her, so we think she will like both of them…. about third boyfriend, she is still confused… It is also about who supports her career’
Along this, with the help of character they raised, shared and discussed a wide range of issues regarding sexual health, relationships, consent, and gender based violence. Participants themselves developed the story lines and ‘connected the dots’ from their own lived experiences. The story telling method made them extremely comfortable to talk about sensitive topics that are otherwise considered taboo. According to them, it is very necessary to have spaces where no one will judge them on the basis of any expression and emotion or choice. They felt space of such workshop gives them comfort to have fun and learn new things, also made them feel more confident to take better decisions for themselves.