Motsamai was forced to drop out of tertiary education in South Africa when his father, a miner, was retrenched. He sought employment in Johannesburg with a group of his peers working in theatre. The women in the group faced sexual exploitation, when all they wanted was a safe place to stay in the City of Gold. Eventually the theatre group disbanded, and Motsamai was left to struggle on his own.

Note: This story contains explicit content and is recommended for mature viewers age 14 and up.

Special thanks to the International Organization for Migration for providing this story.

Key points to consider in viewing Motsamai’s story

Motsamai’s story touches on a number of important issues affecting labour migrants and their families. His father’s retrenchment from the mines made it impossible for Motasamai to finish college. And, like his father, Motsamai was forced to move a great distance to find work. In Johannesburg, he and his fellow actors faced exploitation. His story encourages us to reflect on the vulnerabilities that migrants face in urban communities and on the way gender impacts the forms of abuse they experience.

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.