Promoting Environmental Best Practices in Cameroon through Music
This project aims at mobilizing music talents across the ten regions of Cameroon to develop creative and educational content in the form of music, with participants competing for the “Cameroon Green Music Award”. The objective here is to eventually influence lifestyles and contribute to environmental sustainability. The winner will be endorsed as a music ambassador for the environment, and will work with implementing partners to promote using music for the environment in Cameroon and beyond.
Objectives include: • To promote behavioural changes and increased awareness on environmental challenges through music in Cameroon • To enhance local capacity and promote ambassadors for the environment through the use of music • To engage and strengthen media discussions and collaboration in promoting music as a tool for education, awareness and policy lobbying on sustainable lifestyles towards the environment in Cameroon and beyond. Outcome To increase public awareness and build local capacity that will promote behavioural change to local environmental challenges and promote the responsible use and consumption of natural resources. The Camer Green project started with the mobilization of about 200 youth from seven regions in Cameroon to contest for an award theme - Camer Green Music Ambassador. Contestants submitted a song track gear toward promoting a sustainable lifestyles and prompting the public to take action toward a sustainable lifestyle. Through a series of internal and public auditions 10 finalists were shortlisted to compete for the position of the Camer Green Music Ambassador. The ten finalists were then subjected to a 10 day intensive training organised in a form of a boot camp. The training focused on improving the knowledge of the contestants on global and local environmental challenges and on how they could use their songs to effectively promote sustainable lifestyles. Participants were equally trained on public speaking, media communication, project writing and team building among other skills. Participants also worked together as a team to produce a theme some aim at promoting best environmental practices. After the boot camp, the ten finalists also participated in a series of media campaigns where they shared their motivations and experience of engaging in music that could bring about change. Participants also participated in a series of caravan shows with the motive to reach/motivate the public on the importance of adopting a sustainable lifestyle. The competition rounded off with a final concert, which was open to the public free of charge. During the concert, the ten finalists competed in front of the jury for the position of the Camer Green Music Ambassador. The best three runners were awarded cash prices of $2500, $1700 and $1400 respectively. This award was meant to be invested in a course that will enable them continuously promote environmental best practices in their respective communities. The project implementer with continue to engage with the ten finalists of the competition to explore ways through which the concept can be upscale in and without Cameroon Firstly, there have been a strong positive response of the public in welcoming the concept of music for the environment. Through public awareness campaigns and media talks, most followers of the Camer Green project have attested that this is a unique approach to raise awareness on the growing environmental challenges and they are convinced that up scaling the project will make a greater impact in promoting sustainable lifestyles initiatives. Secondly, the evaluation results with contestants revealed that more meaning have been added to their career as musicians by their engagement in singing to promote a better feature. All 50 the contestants who made it to the first public audition attested that it was a learning process for them. They attested that they feel more connected to nature after the exercise of composing their music. Thirdly the ten finalists who made it to the boot camp attested that, when the competition was launched, they were motivated to enroll because of the cash value of the award. However, the capacity building process of the competition changed their notion completely and they now see it as an obligation to promote sustainable lifestyle in their daily activities. Many participants of the boot camp also found career opportunity through the interactive learning process/environment of the boot camp. They project also witnessed a strong engagement of the media toward the end of the competition. At the beginning of the competition, the media was very reluctant to engage in the promotion of the concept as it was relatively new compared to the popular music brands. Notwithstanding, through the testimonies of the contestants and the few media that were fully engaged during the start of the project, more than 20 other media stations joined in to add their voices to the concept. In addition, the project has created a brand of music that has come to stay in Cameroon. Increasing, many media houses are requesting copy right to use the music of the ten finalist in their media house for entertainment. Many environmental media program are also requesting for the participation of the award winner in their programs Although the first phase of this project has successfully ended, they has been many lesson learn and it has created opportunities for better engagement of the general public and the media. The project also has presented a high potential of replication and up scaling. We are currently, welcoming stakeholders that are willing to add their voice to this initiative and make "green music" the most powerful brand of music in this generation.
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