This project, run by the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine enabled adolescents in Zimbabwe to capture their stories and the stories of others living with HIV.

The aims of the project were:

  • To increase public awareness of the burden of HIV infection among adolescents and their complex clinical and psychosocial issues.
  • To engage in dialogue with families and healthcare workers, where they have a chance to voice their concerns and hear those of young people → breaking of the silence.
  • To facilitate communication within schools → to strengthen the wider supportive context of schools.
  • To engage with local and national decision-makers.

The project team provide two guides (available under useful resources): 

Chiedza Life skills manual: Guidance for facilitators wishing to lead sessions with young people on HIV within a context such as Zimbabwe. This includes session outlines and guidance on how to talk through the disease and treatment and some of the difficult emotions which might arise.

A Film facilitation guide: A guide which was used with the film (featured below) to stimulate conversations about the key issues that children and adolescents (young people) living with HIV face such as stigma, discrimination and challenges taking lifelong treatment. It is designed for use by teachers and community groups with tools that can be used in the classroom or in the community.

This presentation by Rashida Ferrand made at the Wellcome Trust International Engagement workshop in 2016 gives further background on the project. 


Caption: Chiedza's song, the final film. Credit: London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.


Caption: This film shows interviews and stories from HIV-infected adolescents collected as part of the Breaking the Silence project. Credit: London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. 


Caption: Interview with the audience during shooting of Chiedza's song. Credit: London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. 

The Film of Chiedza's Song 

Caption: Chiedza's Song for schools part 1 from PICTURING HEALTH on Vimeo.


Caption: Chiedza's Song for schools part 2 from PICTURING HEALTH on Vimeo.

This resource came out of the 2016 Wellcome Trust The Art of Health: exploring creative engagement with health Research workshop. Visit the workshop page on Mesh for more resources like this plus information on the workshop and its outcomes.


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