Theatre, an integral  vehicle for social change

EDITOR — Theatre has the potential to being a democratic medium, in which the audiences may play an active role in programming, and therefore in producing and distributing messages.

It is not centralised like the technological media, and is capable of integrating indigenous and popular systems of communication that already exists in the rural areas. 
It has appropriate technology, since all its needs is human resources, which are plentiful in the villages. 

It is capable of being more effective since it uses interpersonal channels that have been found to have more impact than the mediated channels of electronic and print media.
Chisango (2004) posits that edutainment is the process of purposely designing and implementing a media message to both entertain and educate, in order to increase audience members’ knowledge about an issue, create favourable attitude, shift social norms, and change the overt behaviour of individuals and communities.

The larger purpose of edutainment programmes is to contribute to the process of direct social change, which can occur at the individuals, community, or societal level.

The edutainment strategy contributes to social change in two ways. It can influence audience awareness, attitudes, and behaviours towards a socially desirable end. 
The anticipated effects are located in the individual audience members. 

In HIV/Aids programmes this includes urging individuals to adopt HIV prevention behaviours such as using condoms, abstinence or reducing the number of sexual partners to one.
Edutainment can also influence the audience’s external environment to help create the necessary conditions for social change.