With over 100 social theatre performances in 15 locations across the Republic of Moldova, the Youth Network of Peer Educators `Peer to Peer` (Y-PEER Moldova) has continued working closely with young people even during the challenging 2020.

Y-PEER Moldova is one of the largest youth networks in the country, being present in 33 schools in both rural and urban areas. Their 300 peer educators, 60 teacher trainers and 100 young trainers promote a healthy lifestyle, youth leadership and participation in decision-making at school and community level. They are a strong organisation but even they struggled at the beginning of March
Fortunately, the regional project “COVID 19: Civil Society Resilience and Sustainability” funded by the European Union and implemented by ERIM (formerly IREX Europe), enabled Y-PEER Moldova to keep their office running and adapt their work to the post pandemic environment by making their office safe and compliant with new health regulations.
On 23-29 November Y-Peer Moldova organised the Final National Festival of Social Theatre 2020 which tackled topics on young people’s minds such as lack of information about sexual and reproductive health, and lack of extracurricular activities, which can lead to substance abuse among youth. As part of the festival awards were given to 15 teams of young people for the most powerful message and the best performance. The participants shared the challenges they encountered and how they overcame them, what lessons they learned.

“This is my first participation that offered me both a unique experience and an education in online communication. With the help and suggestions offered by the Y-PEER Moldova team, we improved our qualities as actors. The most important thing is that we enjoyed this process of identifying an idea, presenting the problem through a play that would be understood by everyone. I was also amazed by the fact that in this Festival, all age groups participated, both young children, teenagers and adults. … we realized that we are all so different, but at the same time so creative and original. The pandemic did not stop us from reaching our goals,” said Alina Ciobanu, Festival participant from Floreşti.