Preda Deutsch Website


November 13, 2001 · 


by Frank Mischo

They were humiliated, used, and treated like animals. For many of these Philippine girls and boys, after doing ‘business” in shabby hotel beds and backstreets, life seemed to be practically at an end before it had really begun. They had seen too much, given too much, had too much fear. Some of them had begun to try to deal with what had happened in their childhood. In the therapy center PREDA (Peoples’ Recovery, Empowerment, and Development Assistance) supported by Kindernothilfe, these girls and boys learn to live with the fear, rage, and mourning in their souls. The center’s Street Theater, which is assisted by professional actors from the PETA association, works for a creative handling of all these experiences. The Theater toured in Germany last year with its program “Masks Behind the Dreams”. The interjection of dance and pantomime scenes help to carry the ideas beyond the barriers of language. Kindernothilfe asked the volunteers from its working groups to help, and offered support in this tour of Germany – and with success. The youth theater group could not just be seen in the Pavillion of Hope at the EXPO, but thanks to the great commitment of the working groups in Berlin, Karlsruhe, and Bremen, could also perform in those cities. In the nation’s capital the young people made their presentation in the cultural portion of a city project for children, designed to allow them to make all decisions themselves and briefly fill positions even up to the mayor’s office. In Karlsruhe the performances were presented in the auditorium of the youth center and in front of city hall in the town center. The people of Bremen saw the Philippine girls and boys in the Habenhaus Church and in a school performance. The members of the working groups and their families played host to the young people. Personal friendships were formed with the guests. The German hosts people’s exhuberance and strength. Likewise, worries about the young people possibly experiencing culture clash were completely unnecessary. The group had been exceptionally well prepared for their trip to Europe. The performances of the PREDA youths really moved audiences of every age group and motivated them to deal with the subject of violence and abuse. The young people also made a real connection between Europe and the Philippines. After all, sex-tourism and child prostitution can and must be fought against also in Germany.[END]


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