Raising awareness of Covid-19 and GBV with MTV Shuga
While Covid19 is the biggest pandemic facing the world right now, South Africa has another pandemic that has been crippling the nation for many years.
Gender based violence has been an embarrassing plague for the country and a lot of work still has to be done to curb it.
Actor Oros Mampofu is adding his voice to the conversation through the popular infotainment online series, MTV Shuga Alone Together.
Mampofu is taking on the role of series regular Bongi's (played by Mohau Cele) troublesome boyfriend, Kabelo.
"I’ve been especially sensitive to Kabelo's journey because it’s a very big subject and issue in society today, even more so under the country's current pandemic that we face of the abuse of women and children. I took the time to dig deeper into the cultural misconceptions that we have adopted in our time as men that contribute to the problem of GBV and also the issues we face that boil over into the toxic acts of domestic violence and toxic control," said the father of one.
The show is a multi-platform edutainment campaign that has been using pop culture, trending music and youthful storytelling to change behaviours for over a decade.
Mampofu said he has been a strong follower of the show for years.
"When the opportunity presented itself to me, it was simply a great honour to take part in this project."
He will be joining cast members Timini Egbuson (Tobi), Nick Mutuma (Leo), Tomiwa Tegbe (Wasiu), Jemima Osunde (Leila), Lerato Walaza (Zamo) and Ange Eric N'Guessan (Daniel) on this new journey. Nomalanga Shozi is also a new cast member.
The show premise is set in Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa and Cote D’Ivoire during the height of the COVID-19 outbreak.
Mampofu said he wanted the viewers to be educated by the characters.
"I would like for them to know that the danger of abuse can even be as close to you as the person you love the most. It is important for all people to be aware of the signs and signals of an abusive partner and if you experience any of that then leave that environment or call for help before it’s too late."
Like all actors, Mampofu has had to adjust to working in the time of coronavirus.
"I’ve taken this time to focus more on the other streams of income and passion that allow me to be at home full time while shooting on a few productions when it’s absolutely necessary to have me on set. The set environments have been very safe but also different under the new regulations of shooting but in time one will adjust," he said.
The diverse African cast of the self-shot 65-part mini-series aims to raise awareness in the global fight to flatten COVID-19. The series is available on Youtube.