A one-man show, written and performed by actor Steve Kidd, was performed for 406 students in eighth grade at the Pollard Middle School. The play was originated by Steve following several summers of work at a camp for HIV-positive children. He wrote the play in an effort to inspire young people to do public service through telling the stories of some of these children and families. He combines actual stories of children living with HIV/AIDs with excerpts from Ursala Le Guin’s short story “The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas.”
The performance ties into the students’ unit on short stories (which includes “The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas”). It also connects with the eighth-grade Community Service Learning program. Steve told the students about how he first volunteered to work at the HIV/AIDs camp mostly because he did not have anything else to do for a summer and how it has enriched his life more than anything else he has done in his career. One of the reasons that he created this program was to encourage public service. The students recently had their introduction to the CSL program and “Sigh/Omelas” will inspire them to understand their ability to make a positive impact, just at the time when they will be choosing their projects.