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Produced by Jennice Ripley; directed by Debbie McGee
National Film Board of Canada, 1993. VHS cassette, 23 min., $26.95. Distributed by the NFB.

Subject Headings:
Youth-Sexual behavior.
HIV infections-Prevention.
AIDS (Disease) in adolescence-Prevention.

Grades 10 and up / Ages 15 and up

Reviewed by Meredith MacKeen

Volume 22 Number 6
1994 November/December

A young women who has been diagnosed as HlV-positive has returned to rural Newfoundland to speak to young people about preventing AIDS. Scenes of groups of high school students at school, at the local hang-out, and on the shore, are interspersed with scenes from the young woman's life. The students state that there are only two things to do in a rural community: have sex and drink alcohol, a common opinion.

The message of this video is very clear: responsible sex requires a condom, and needles of any kind cannot be shared safely. If one contracts AIDS, it's one's own fault; there is no excuse. When young people feel too embarrassed to buy a condom, they need only think about the humiliation and troubles of an unplanned pregnancy or being diagnosed HlV-positive.

The scenes of coastal Newfoundland are memorable and challenge those who believe that rural students are safe and not sexually active. As well, the cliches about homosexuals and drug users fade as viewers face the issue of promiscuity. The film is frank and the message is to take responsibility for one's actions, assuming most students are sexually active.

This video will be a welcome addition to libraries serving high school students requiring background on the topic of AIDS. Purchase is recommended and, as with all materials of this nature, previewing is suggested.

Meredith MacKeen is a teacher-librarian at Souris Regional High School in Souris, Prince Edward Island

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