ARDA Holds Treatment Workshop

ARDA hosted a 5-day residential workshop this week in Lagos for the National Urban Reproductive Health Initiative Phase 2 project “Get it Together.”  The project, which seeks to increase usage of Modern Family Planning methods amongst men women and couples, takes place in three Nigerian states, Lagos, Kaduna and Oyo.  

You might recall there was a design document workshop a couple of months ago where we created the design document.  The design document was necessary for us to know the messages we would be interweaving into each episode of the programme as well as acting as a general guide and plan for us.  

Each of the three states will have their own original programmes although the structure of each state’s programme- magazine and drama- will be similar.

What is different this time, however, is that each show is actually continuing from the previous season.  This doesn’t often happen in our productions.  Even when we did continue with the stories in NURHI Phase 1, we set it in that universe, but focused on new characters with the old characters in the background for some context.  

This time however, the presence of Transmedia characters changed things a little.  NURHI had, through audience feedback, picked some of the popular characters from the previous season to be the faces of the Transmedia campaign.  Characters like Amaka from Se’rigbo, Ibrahim and Nana from Komai nisan jifa, and Bolatito from Ireti Eda will be appearing on other media channels in the near future.  

This made things quite interesting as most of these characters had finished their story arcs in the previous season and were supposed to be in the happily ever after phase of their lives and had even completed their family planning journeys from non-users to happy and satisfied users.  We had to be creative in coming up with exciting new plots that these legacy characters could be involved in whilst not rendering their previous story arcs meaningless.  

It’s going to be an intense season, these much loved characters really go through the ringer this time, and listeners will be wondering if they will make it by the end.  

As per usual, ARDA split the attendees into three groups- one for each state. Each of the three state teams worked really hard and by the close of the workshop on Friday night, had managed to create three very exciting, must-listen radio dramas if the treatments we’ve seen are anything to go by.  Now comes the review phase, where we will be reviewing the treatments in-house and in conjunction with our partners, NURHI, before finalising them and starting the actual scripting process.

April dawned bright the last day of the conference as we checked out and departed to our various homes; the end of March heralding the end of a busy and very productive workshop. 

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