Durbanite’s Photo and Kenyan’s Rap Video Receive Top Honors
Durban, December 5, 2011 – A riveting photo “Solar Panels: The Sunny Energy” by a young Durbanite, Dina Osman, and a catchy rap video “Me and My Bike” celebrating bicycle transport by Dickson Oyuki of Kenya won top honors in the Africa-wide Connect4Climate competition announced in Durban today.
Robyn Curnow, South African CNN Anchor, announced the winners at the packed Africa Pavilion of the COP 17 meeting. The event celebrated and showcased the creative energies of African youth, ages 13 to 35, who contributed 639 photos and 47 videos to answer key questions such as, How is climate change affecting Africa? Your country? Your community? You, your friends, and your family?
“The C4C competition was first and foremost an effort to hear the voices of African youth and engage their creative talents to create climate smart solutions for tomorrow,” said Andrew Steer, World Bank Special Envoy for Climate Change. “The response was enthusiastic with entries from every country on the African continent. The photos and videos we see today are proof positive that even as governments deliberate climate change, people are taking action on the ground and achieving results.”
The 54 winners hail from 20 African countries including Angola, Benin, Cameroon, Chad, Egypt, Eritrea, Gambia, Kenya, Lesotho, Madagascar, Malawi, Morocco, Niger, Rwanda, South Africa, Somalia, Sudan, Tunisia, Uganda, and Zambia. Prizes include solar backpacks, digital video and still cameras, and computer tablets.
Commenting on the importance of the awards, Monique Barbut, CEO and Chairperson of the Global Environment Facility, a C4C sponsor, said, “C4C is an inspiration for those most often regarded as too young to be heard. Now, young Africans can reach world audiences through this new platform. I am convinced that the search for solutions to today’s climate change challenges must include those who will suffer its consequences the most and have the most to contribute through their daily actions. These are the young stakeholders.”
Young people submitted climate change stories related to one of six categories: agriculture, energy, forests, gender, health, and water. The response to the competition was impressive, with entries from budding photographers and filmmakers from every country on the African continent. The winning photographs include powerful images of drought and floods as well as innovative solutions such as solar panels, clean cookstoves, and reforestation projects to name just a few.
The C4C campaign unites over 110 partners, including international organizations, social media networks, UN agencies, civil society including academic institutions, as well as youth organizations and private sector representatives. Since launching in September, C4C has built a Facebook community of over 100,000 followers with a weekly online reach of six million.
The Italian Ministry of Environment is a core sponsor and founding member of the initiative. In a message, Corrado Clini, Italy’s newly-appointed Minister of Environment said, "Today’s rapidly changing social media environment presents a great opportunity for global discussion, advocacy, and participation. The C4C campaign is amplifying local voices and enabling policymakers to listen and learn from the innovations that are happening throughout Africa and helping to bring together environmentally-engaged citizens from all corners of the globe."
Connect4Climate is a global partnership initiative supported by the World Bank and the Italian Ministry of Environment. Connect4Climate Knowledge Partners include:
Adamawa State University in Mubi, African Forum on Mobility and Development, Africa Rural Connect-National Peace Corps Association, African Union Commission, African University College of Communication, African Virtual University, African Youth Initiative on Climate Change, Ahfad University for Women, Anlo Awomefia Senior High School, American Renewable Energy Day, Boston University, Brainforest, Center for Girls and Interaction, Centro de Estudos Mocambicans e Internacionais, CISP - International Committee for the Development of Peoples, Cittadinanzattiva Onlus, Children’s Radio Foundation, Coaches Across Continents, Columbia University Center for Research on Environmental Decisions, Communication for Sustainable Development Initiative, Conserve Africa, Educate!, Ethiopian Global Initiative, FAO, FOCSIV – Volontari per lo sviluppo, Flickr, George Mason University Center for Climate Change Communication, Georgetown University Center for Social Impact Communication, Ghana Institute of Management and Public Administration, Global Alliance for Clean Cook Stoves, Global Unification-The Gambia, Horn Relief, Institute of Tropical Agriculture-Kumasi, Inter Press Service, International Centre for Environmental Research, iYPTDI, Jeunesse Secours, Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies, Liceo Marconi Asmara Madre Terra Chiama Uomou – Africa ’70, Mahatma Gandhi University, Maranyundo School, MILMUN Milan International Model United Nation, Momenta, Mwelu Foundation, MXit, Nigerian Youth Climate Coalition, NR2154, Obafemi Awolowo University, Orbicom, Oshwal Academy Nairobi – Junior High, Pastoral Environmental Network in the Horn of Africa, Plan International, Project Diaspora, Qamar Zaman, Radio FM Liberté, Reuters AlertNet, Rio Conventions Pavilion, RITE FM, Solar Sister, Somali Aid Foundation, Sorgenia, Soundtracker.fm, South East African Climate Consortium Student Forum, Stella Maris Polytechnic, Television Trust for the Environment, Tony Blair International Academy, Trees for the Future Ghana, Uganda Medicinal Plant Growers Ltd., UN Decade on Biodiversity, UN Foundation, UN Women, UN Association – National Capital Area, UNDP, UNEP, UNESCO, UNFCCC, UNIC Pretoria, UNICEF, Unite4Climate Zambia, University of Massachusetts Boston Center for Governance and Sustainability, University of The Gambia, World Bank Institute IMAGE Network, Youth Initiatives Kenya, Youthink!
Prizes kindly provided by the Global Environment Facility (GEF), Autogrill, and Unicredit.