Dear Friends and Supporters,

What an incredible year this has been for us at Global Empowerment Theatre (GET). We are celebrating five years of programs in Zanzibar, a year of incorporation, expansion to India, and our students performing on the “world stage” as part of the Zanzibar International Film Festival (ZIFF).

Students participating in GET’s workshop this summer wrote piece after piece reflecting on corruption – in the government and in the doctors’ office – and corruption was of great concern to both the boys and the girls as they built their futures and ethical framework. On our way to perform at the 2011 Zanzibar International Film Festival (ZIFF), the students piled onto a dala dala (bus) and GET’s teachers handed them the student rate of 150 Tanzanian shillings. The non-student price for the dala dala is 300 shillings. The conductor of the dala dala looked nonplussed as all of these low-paying students piled in. We began moving, however, we were only half way to the festival when the conductor stopped and threatened to turn around and take us back if the students did not pay full price. The students argued that this was unfair, so the driver just parked the car and locked all of the doors. I felt a growing concern for my own safety and for the safety of these students. The students began opening the windows; boys helping girls climb out through the windows and students forcing the door open. They chanted, “No corruption,” as we marched towards the festival, empowered by the action they had taken, an action that had been explored in scenes in which they stood up to injustices in healthcare, harassing bosses, cruel leaders and even teachers using corporal punishment. One boy turned to me and said, “We did it didn’t we? We can be good leaders and fight corruption.”

Thank you for your support and contributions to GET over the past year. Your generosity has made it possible for students to critique and celebrate their circumstances, learn to speak English with confidence, and act to make changes within their community.

Asante sana,

Jennifer Holmes
Founder & Director


*Founder & Director, Jennifer Holmes, is pictured above with two students who participated in GETZanzibar 2010 & 2011.

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