The SASA! Activist Kit includes a wide range of creative materials, such as posters, comics, info sheets and soap opera dramas for use with different groups in the community to provoke discussion and debate about power, violence against women and girls and HIV/AIDS. These materials were originally created by Raising Voices for Ugandan communities. We know that a simple translation is not enough to make them relevant to Haitian communities, and that Haitian voices and cultural relevance are central to success. Knowing that there are many things about Haitian culture itself that can help move dialogue forward, we have set out to adapt SASA! tools to fit within Haitian worldview and reality.
To respect the original spirit and intent of SASA! and help the materials be truly Haitian sometimes requires rewriting, changes in color and form of drawings, and even including a new character in the community dramas—in addition to translation into Haitian Creole.
To achieve this adaptation, translators, cultural consultants, long-time activists in violence against women, people with experience implementing SASA! in Uganda, staff and community activists of SASA! in Haiti, and Haitian artists and graphic designers are all needed. The adaptation team includes a former Raising Voices staff member who maintains close contact with Raising Voices for technical support.
The complete adaptation process consists of translation, adaptation, focus group testing, graphic design, and printing.
So far, we have completed all communication materials for all phases of SASA!, as well as guidance for program staff to create community dialogue, media campaigns, and engaging training materials for the Start and Awareness phases. The adaptation process is ongoing for other SASA! materials.
The difference is apparent in participants’ reactions to the materials when shown a simple translation versus a full adaptation.
In testing, translations seemed foreign and were often misunderstood, while adapted materials created excitement and engagement. Some participants in community tests even said they wanted to take the draft materials home to show their families and continue the discussion!
A Few Examples of Our Communications Materials: