By Daisy Nandeche Okoti
Published December 5, 2014
Africa comes to Nairobi December 6-12, 2014 for the annual celebration of creativity and film through children, youth and family at Lola Kenya Screen festival, skills-development programme and marketing platform for children and youth in eastern Africa.
The 9th edition of Lola Kenya Screen brings together children and youth and industry captains from Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi and Tanzania for specialised training in camera techniques, lighting, sound production, editing and visual effects; conferences on creative and cultural entrepreneurship within East Africa; painting, drawing, sketching; team-building activities; history of humanity and cultures; and daily film shows, and discussion and networking with policy-makers and implementers.
Ogova Ondego, Lola Kenya Screen’s Creative Director, says that the focus of the initiative has always been children and youth because there is need for them to get exposed to these skills as they grow up.
While the training takes place at Goethe Institut and meetings at Nairobi Safari Club, cultural programmes and film shows will be based at Nairobi National Museum and Nairobi Gallery.
The festival enables children and youth to showcase their work, meet with industry practitioners from around the globe, network and learn trends in world cinema.
One of the main goals of bringing in participants from the five countries of East Africa is to emphasise the goal of integration of the region and to draw the interest of the children to the unification efforts being made in the socio-political, cultural and economic fields to give East Africans the opportunity to move across nation-state borders unhindered. Having the 11-16-year-old East Africans working together at Lola Kenya Screen gives them a first-hand opportunity of learning from one another and experiencing the importance of this diversity.
Also meeting in Nairobi are officials of the East African Film Network (EAFN) who are set to deliberate on the their strategic plan for the growth of film in all its aspects—training, production, marketing, distribution—in the region. EAFN board members are also set to meet with government officials in the country especially in the areas of Culture, Social Development, Finance, Education, East Africa Community Affairs as well as people from inter-governmental and non-governmental organisations on matters of mutual interest. EAFN believes that film is culture and that if it can be used to draw the people to see their similarities, then it would hasten the process of regional integration.
The 9th Lola Kenya Screen is supported by Goethe-Institut, ComMattersKenya, Nairobi National Museum, EAFN, East African Community (EAC), and Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ).