[QODLink]
Witness
Wan Smol Bag
A theater group aims to break down taboos and social problems common on Vanuatu Islands.
Last Modified: 04 Feb 2009 06:26 GMT

Watch part two

Filmmaker: Veronica McCarthy

When you see the words 'Wan Smol Bag' written down they do not seem to make much sense. But said by a Pacific Islander they become crystal clear.

Wan Smol Bag is a theater company on the Islands of Vanuatu.

Tourists see a tropical and happy paradise but turn the postcard over and you will find a different Vanuatu.

Many of the Islanders live in slums, they face unemployment, alcohol and drug abuse, a worrying HIV infection rate and domestic violence. 

They don't have access to clean water and hospitals, health care, electricity and infrastructure.  

The average age for these Islanders is 23 but few can read or write, and even fewer own radios or televisions.

Which is why the Wan Smol Bag theater company is such an effective means of communication. 

They weave strong social messages into their plays to educate as well as to entertain. And now they are turning their attention to health and environmental issues, too.

Filmmaker Veronica McCarthy met the man behind the company and some of the actors were pulling some surprising tricks out of Wan Smol Bag.

Source:
Al Jazeera
Featured on Al Jazeera
Muslim volunteers face questioning and threat of arrest, while aid has been disrupted or blocked, charities say.
Six months on, outrage and sorrow over the mass schoolgirl abduction has disappeared - except for families in Nigeria.
ISIL combatants seeking an 'exit strategy' from Mideast conflict need positive reinforcement back home, analysts say.
European nation hit by a wave of Islamophobia as many young fighters join ISIL in Syria and Iraq.
Featured
Lacking cohesive local ground forces to attack in tandem, coalition air strikes will have limited effect, experts say.
Hindu right-wing groups run campaign against what they say is Muslim conspiracy to convert Hindu girls into Islam.
Six months on, outrage and sorrow over the mass schoolgirl abduction has disappeared - except for families in Nigeria.
Muslim caretakers maintain three synagogues in eastern Indian city, which was once home to a thriving Jewish community.
Amid fresh ISIL gains, officials in Anbar province have urged the Iraqi government to request foreign ground troops.