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Putting climate change in the spotlight

December 16, 2021

Poverty, limited access to education and increasingly frequent drought make life difficult for some Kenyans. Could bringing these issues to the stage have an impact?

Locals on stage in Kenya
Locals address their everyday problems on the stageImage: Edwin Gikonoyo Kariuki

Fighting climate change with theater

The people of Kenya are facing multiple challenges, including low levels of education, early marriage, deforestation and the fact one third of the population lives in poverty. On top of this, climate change is leading to more frequent and long-lasting droughts.

Could theater help people address these complex issues? Supported by the project "The art of building resilience" - a Small Grants Project of the International Climate Initiative IKI - the non-governmental organisation S.A.F.E. Kenya brings actors and education experts to local villages to listen to people's problems and use their stories as inspiration for developing a play.

Cattle in Kenya
Long-lasting droughts are making cattle breeding increasingly difficultImage: Edwin Gikonoyo Kariuki

Villagers can explore potential solutions to real-life issues on the stage, and potentially transfer them to their own lives. We accompanied a family for several weeks as they engaged with the project.

Project: SAFE Pwani; Small Grants program of the International Climate Initiative (IKI) 

Project goal:

The IKI Small Grants funding programme is implemented by the German development agency GIZ and supports non-profit projects and initiatives that address it's four funding areas: Reducing greenhouse gas emissions, climate change adaptation, conservation of carbon sinks and reducing emissions from deforestation, and conserving biodiversity

Project duration: Runs until 2025

Project funding: Up to €200,000 ($225,366) per individual project

A film by Tabea Mergenthaler