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Where is My Sweet Potato? Creating Change through Forum Theatre with Street Children in Burundi

Cooper, Karin; Munyerere, Bienvenu; Yannick, Mubakilay; Omari, Leah


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Dr Karin Cooper
Senior Lecturer/Interim co-Head School Psychology and Social Work

Bienvenu Munyerere

Mubakilay Yannick

Leah Omari


This paper examines the innovative use of Boal’s Theatre of the Oppressed (Forum Theatre) with a group of 30 street children and young people in East Africa. Drawing upon a project in Burundi, this paper reveals how participants utilized the process of performance making through Forum Theatre as a platform to make visible problems in their lives, and a vehicle to challenge inequalities, abuse and violence. The authors demonstrate how the adoption of this methodology raised questions about interactive theatre as creative activism and a tool for opening up possibilities for dialogue with a community-based audience. This paper illuminates ways in which street children, explored, examined and problematized their lived experience, through the creative lens of Forum Theatre. It argues that this methodology generated a sense of collective consciousness, through which the children and young people created personal and social change, which extended beyond the life of the project.


Cooper, K., Munyerere, B., Yannick, M., & Omari, L. (2020). Where is My Sweet Potato? Creating Change through Forum Theatre with Street Children in Burundi. Studies on Home and Community Science, 14(1-2), 57-63.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Jul 23, 2020
Publication Date 2020-12
Deposit Date Dec 18, 2020
Publicly Available Date Oct 27, 2022
Journal Studies on Home and Community Science
Print ISSN 0973-7189
Publisher Kamla-Raj Enterprises
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 14
Issue 1-2
Pages 57-63
Keywords Forum Theatre; Street children; Burundi
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