Elizabeth lives in Zimbabwe, which, like many parts of the world, faces big challenges with HIV stigma and violence towards women and girls. Her young niece was orphaned and subsequently abused by family members. Ultimately the niece’s case was taken to court and she regained her property and rights.

Special thanks to the Open Society Initiative of Southern Africa for providing this story.

Key points to consider in viewing Elizabeth’s story

Countries throughout sub-Saharan Africa are facing the challenges of addressing HIV stigma and caring for children orphaned by the AIDS epidemic. Elizabeth’s story encourages reflection on these issues. Gender is central to the abuses faced by Elizabeth’s niece. And yet, hope – for Elizabeth’s niece and all children affected by HIV and AIDS – is a real possibility at the end of the story.

Learn More

Sonke works with many communities to use storytelling and digital media to help people tell their own stories around gender, violence, HIV and AIDS and related issues.

Sonke partnered with Silence Speaks to enable young people and adults affected by violence and HIV and AIDS to share their stories. Other digital stories have been produced with former prisoners who experienced sexual violence in jail. And the MenEngage African Youth Alliance and Sonke partnered with UNFPA to produce “Youth Stories of Change” along with a discussion guide and other resources.

Through intensive, participatory video production workshops, Sonke is bringing rarely-heard voices and images into the civic arena. Our hope is that by highlighting everyday stories, we will deepen existing conversations about gender norms and health issues, as well as empower the storytellers and their communities.

Download Resources

Click here to download a facilitator’s guide, discussion guides and other Digital Stories resources to assist in the use of these tools in your community.