An African version of the “It Gets Better” project has been launched in South Africa, offering a message of hope to LGBT people.
The video campaign was originally created in the US in response to a spate of suicides by LGBT teens, most of whom faced bullying because of their sexuality.
It features high profile Americans, such as President Barack Obama, Adam Lambert, Anne Hathaway, Colin Farrell and Ellen DeGeneres, who have recorded video messages of support to young LGBT people.
Now South African-based actor, playwright and radio presenter Frank Malaba, has initiated an African version of the campaign, called ‘It Will Get Better Africa’, through Radio Outspoken – the weekly LGBT radio show.
“The intention is to present supportive messages and stories to help people who are struggling, showing them that there are LGBT people on African soil who are living positive lives in relative freedom,” Malaba told Mambaonline.
“It’s a positive space for people, LGBT and straight, to be able to speak out,” he said.
Malaba has kicked off the campaign with his own video message which can be viewed below. More videos will be added to the It Will Get Better Africa YouTube channel
He revealed that Justice Edwin Cameron, the openly gay Constitutional Court Judge, has agreed to record a video for the campaign and Malaba added that he has also approached a number of MPs from the ANC and DA.
He urged anyone who has a positive message or story to record a video and post it on the YouTube channel. “They don’t have to have a title or be famous as long as their message ends with the phrase ‘It will get better'”, said Malaba.
A photographic version of the campaign will also be launched and people who are interviewed on the radio station will be asked to record a 30 second It Will Get Better Africa audio message that will be played on the Outspoken show.
Radio Today’s Outspoken is broadcast on Mondays from 20h00 to 22h00 (GMT+2) on 1485 AM and DStv Audio Channel 169. It also streams on the worldwide web on http://www.1485.org.za.