The first edition of the Kenya Arts and Essay Competition was launched in Nairobi on August 1st 2018 at the Kilimani Primary School. The competition is organized by the Ministry of Environment and Forestry in collaboration with the Ministry of Education. It was launched by the chief administrative officer, Ministry of Environment, Mr Elmi Mohammed on behalf of CS, Keriako Tobiko and the Principal Secretary Ms Susan Mochache.

The Ministry of Education was represented by the director of adult and continuing Education Mr Nyabwari Kinara. Other senior government officials also attended. UNDP country director Ms Amanda Serumanga was present as well as other development agencies. Students from various schools attended and participated in the event that kicks off the county wide competition.

The theme of the Competition is Climate Change: Dream, Express, Act! The Kiswahili translation is Climate Change: Ota, Jieleze, Tenda!

During his speech, Mr. Elmi noted that education and awareness on impacts of climate change is prioritized internationally and locally as a critical vehicle to driving sustainable development. He said the competition is expected to enhance awareness, knowledge and skills of learners in understanding climate change and taking appropriate action as climate change ambassadors.

The event brought together more than 400 young learners from Private and Public Primary and Secondary Schools including Alternative Provision of Basic Education and Training (APBET) institutions in Nairobi County, private sector, development partners, ministries and supporting agencies in climate change. During the launch a mock competition was held. The young learners were given an alternative to either draw or write an Essay, 9 winners were selected and awarded prizes by Kartasi Brand.

Primary and Secondary School students across the country are expected to learn and give artistic ideas on climate change. The competition is aimed at empowering learners to find creative solutions and provides a unique opportunity to listen to and act on children’s perspective on climate change. The competition will also recognize the significance of inclusivity by having a dedicated category for learners with special needs who will be recognized and awarded during the exhibition and awards ceremony. The competition aims to inculcate climate change awareness by tapping into creativity and talent of primary and high school students.

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