United States of Kibera
United States of Kibera
This documentary follows the lives and projects of artists and journalists in one of the world's largest slums in Nairobi, Kenya.
This documentary follows the lives and projects of artists and journalists in one of the world's largest slums in Nairobi, Kenya. Read more
About this project
Kibera is the world's second largest urban slum, with population estimates ranging from 300,000 to one million. There are about 14 informal neighborhoods, most of which are largely separated by ethnic lines. Despite these divions and its bad reputation, Kibera is a community. It is a place where artists, dj’s, journalists and the local residents pool resources not only to survive but in order to positively contribute to the welfare of the community (despite lack of attention from the local government).
Pamoja FM is the only radio station/media center in Kibera. The station was instrumental in quelling violence after the presidential elections of 2007. During that time, Pamoja became the voice of reason and rallying point for community cohesion by providing unbiased and multiethnic information updates, safety advice, and reinforcement of community ethics. Today Pamoja continues to be an integral part of the community for the best music, most reliable independent and localized media coverage. In addition, Pamoja uses its programs as an open forum to discuss, teach and learn about various issues concerning community development and challenges in daily life.
This documentary will chronicle the combined efforts of Pamoja FM and Jah-Army, a local art development collective, planning and organizing an event and corresponding radio campaign which will focus on how art can change the community. Jah-Army is an economically self sustained art collective in Kibera. Among the 15 members, they create bead work, paintings, music and films to fund further projects which all promote peace building, environmental consciousness targeting the youth. The film hopes to highlight the pride and hope that exists among what many see as such a bleak landscape. And for the subjects in this film, real changes can take hold in peoples lives through art. The film will show the processes that these artists go through to create for the radio station, performances, or youth workshops, from the home and practice spaces all the way to their big events.
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- (40 days)