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Updated: Jan 2, 2023

I wandered onto the Faces movie by chance. I was in Durban on a fact finding mission to get a work visa and a lady I was encouraged to meet up with was going to the film and invited me. I believe the sole purpose of this meetings was to get me to this movie. The lady I met with was so rude and created such a negative energy for me. Within minutes of meeting her I was ready to walk away, but the universe was telling me to honor my word and go thru with at least seeing the movie and I could part ways after.

Choosing to see the movie was such a great choice because the viewing of Faces touched me on a SOUL level. I am writing about my experience 3 days after seeing the movie and I still have so much raw emotion. We are living in a world where everybody goes out of their way to keep up appearances and nobody wants to talk about the hard stuff like HIV, domestic abuse, sexual abuse, sexuality differences, racism and religious prejudices but Faces addressed all of these issues in such a profound way.

There was a survey question posed asking if the issues raised in the film were relevant to a South African audience? As an American that just happened to be in South Africa at the time of this screening my answer would be that these are issues that are relevant to a WORLD audience. Instead of people showing compassion where these issues are concerned they are resulting to bullying and shaming. I think it’s time that we take a stand against this type of behavior and start having open conversation to educate one another instead of abusing the people who are fighting these battles.

After seeing this movie I am very motivated to be a part of the movement and I hope I can keep the momentum of the emotion that I am experiencing. Luckily I was at the first screening for the film during the Durban International Film Festival and they bribed us to stay for the Q&A by inviting us to the after party.

I had the pleasure of meeting some of the NAZ staff, film director, a few of the cast members and some people from a South African organization for HIV. There was so much positive energy in the room and it was so heartwarming to see the joy on the people’s faces that were allowed to participate in such a nice event.

I believe organizations like NAZ are a great start to helping bridge the gap between compassion and ignorance. Sexual health is an issue in every corner of the world because unfortunately we are living in a time where sex seems to be the ultimate form of recreation, but nobody wants to talk about the consequences of these actions.

In America health care is not affordable for most people so paying an additional fee for STD and HIV testing is low priority. In South Africa you have a huge part of the population that is living in poverty so they definitely don’t have the means to pay for these additional test. My opinion is that Everybody is at risk because most people are not having a conversation about sexual health they are just having fun acting like a lifelong diagnosis can’t happen to them. It’s important that people become aware of organizations like NAZ that work to educate people and encourage people to know their status and to show compassion towards people who do have to live with the diagnosis.

What can you do to change the world we live in?

1. If you know someone who is physically abusive call them on it and shame them!

2. If you know someone is a racist call them on it and make them own their truth!

3. If you know people who are not being sexually responsible call them on it!

It’s time to start holding people accountable for their crap. We NEED to bully and shame ugly, nasty, and rude behavior.


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