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How Africa can leverage art, creativity in push for climate justice –


Following the negative impacts of global warming occasioned by climate change as experienced with the wild fire across Europe, California and the excessive heat across Africa, Creative (Crvte) Development has taken the initiative to push for climate justice leveraging the art and the creative sector with the launch of ‘We!Are Campaign’.

Launched to explore the unique experiences and demands of the creative African youth as they retell the story of climate justice across the globe, the We!Are Campaign aimed to address climate change, the increase in global warming causing unbearable heat; an environmental issue that is fast becoming a human rights issue.

“Climate justice aims to redress this inequality by fairly sharing the problem of climate change as well as the responsibility of dealing with it, with all countries around thse world. It moves the focus of climate change from being solely an environmental issue to being a human rights issue too,” Okito Wedi, CEO and founder, Crvte. Development, stated during the Creative Development webinar held on Thursday 29 July to launch the ‘We!Are Campaign’.

According to her, the initiative is using art, technology and policy in development campaigns and advocacy to mitigate the effects of climate change, and to adapt to the current realities of climate change situation, especially among Africans.

Read also: Africa Soft Power Summit: Stakeholders seek collaboration for progress in creative industry

Africa is warming faster than the rest of the world, according to the State of the Climate in Africa report. However, Wedi is of the opinion that discussing global averages is not enough; hence, Africans have to discuss loss and damage. “Africa must achieve net zero, but not at the expense of its development,” she stated.

According to her, the ultimate goal of the We!Are movement is to socialise climate justice in Africa, using creativity as a means to understand the youth’s demands for mitigation and adaptation in their communities.

Jessica Hagan, one of the co-host of the Creative Development webinar, while speaking on the importance of hubs to the initiative stated that hubs seat at the centre of the art and creative industry. “We see hubs as the future of the creative industry in Africa. We are interested in hubs across Africa that create opportunities for Africans”.

The selected hubs for the We!Are Campaign in Nigeria are ‘The Assembly and Footprints of David Arts (Seaside Cottage Theater)’. The Seaside Cottage Theater’s proposed creative installation/pop-up showcase includes a live and digital photo exhibition in public spaces on the Lagos lagoon via Bariga community with pop ups performance art in several public spaces with audience engagements on climate change. It will also promote the reusable art installations, that is, making Christmas trees with waste pet-bottles on major roads in Bariga.



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