International Educational and Entertainment programme for kids coming soon

blog - International Educational and Entertainment programme for kids coming soon

International Educational and Entertainment programme for kids coming soon

The Walt Disney Company, WildlifeDirect, the US Department of State, and the US Agency for International Development join forces to develop and launch National Geographic Kids Educational Entertainment Programme in Africa.

This collaboration will produce a local show called “National Geographic Kids Africa” in 2022.

WildlifeDirect, based in Kenya, serves as production partner and will lead the on-the-ground outreach program.

It’s all about getting kids to care about the environment. The programme aims to motivate lasting, impactful behavioural change in young viewers and communities in Africa, inspiring the next generation of conservation leaders to care for the natural world and providing them with the knowledge and skills to understand, conserve, and protect it.

Growing and expanding African’s vital creative sector is another aim of the programme.

Nairobi, 26 November 2021: Geographic Kids Africa, which focuses on developing local content surrounding the environment, conservation, and associated topics important to children and their communities. The project aims to inspire and promote behaviour change in its audiences. To protect the world in which they live through engendering a deeper understanding of the natural environment.

The undertaking includes a 26-part television series to be shot primarily in East Africa but with additional filming in West and Southern Africa. The series will be produced by The Walt Disney Company, in association with Kenya-based WildlifeDirect. WildlifeDirect will collaborate on research and creative approaches. National Geographic Kids Africa will air across the continent on National Geographic Wild. It will extend into engaging digital platforms that further explore biodiversity, wildlife and the natural world, and the threats and challenges experienced.

Extending the reach of the National Geographic Kids Africa initiative further, a community outreach project will be launched by implementation partner WildlifeDirect across East Africa, aiming to encourage learners from 200 schools to make a lasting impact on the conservation of species-rich landscapes. By investing in knowledge and skills, through tools such as conservation hubs, educational resources, bespoke educator training and more, the outreach program aims to develop a passionate community of young explorers with the fascination and desire to protect their continent and their world.

National Geographic Kids Africa will be produced entirely in Africa by African storytellers. The stories, leadership and expertise of African conservationists and communities will be prominently featured.

The US Department of State, US Embassies, and local partners in Africa will enhance this initiative through multiple academic, cultural, and professional exchanges. The Department’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs’ people-to-people exchange programs will support professional development and skills sharing across sectors, including conservation, the creative industries, tourism and sustainable practices. Exchange programs create lasting connections and harness attention on conservation and the importance of protecting the natural world. The Department’s Bureau of Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs will continue to lead diplomatic efforts to expand and strengthen policy and programs to conserve and protect nature.

Christine Service, General Manager of The Walt Disney Company Africa, adds:

“For over 133 years, the core mission of National Geographic has been to ignite the explorer in everyone through thought-provoking, fact-based storytelling from scientists, explorers, photographers and filmmakers. This initiative will bring children from across the continent into the conversation and, in doing so, energize the next generation of environmental advocates through this innovative and engaging programme.”

Says Dr Paula Kahumbu, CEO of WildlifeDirect:

“We are deeply humbled and proud to be working with some of the world’s greatest institutions, the US Department of State, USAID, Disney and National Geographic, to transform conservation outcomes in Africa by inspiring people in Africa and around the world through the authentic voices of Africa's young heroes. This series is a first in so many ways, not least the unique partnership but also because of outreach efforts which will deliver a positive impact on nature across the region.”

In addition to amplifying local voices around conservation, the National Geographic Kids Africa initiative supports vital policy goals in addressing the twin crises of climate change and biodiversity loss. US climate and conservation diplomacy aspires to realize economic growth, energy security, and a healthy planet. The loss of nature and her gifts affect all people, and bold action to tackle these twin crises is more urgent than ever.

By engaging the next generation, National Geographic Kids Africa is a critical part of this effort. The series will tell the story of forward-thinking climate and conservation action in inspiring ways. It will highlight the work of African children across the continent and encourage others in Africa to make a difference in their way.

Says Matthew Lussenhop, Acting Assistant Secretary, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, US Department of State:

“A key element of our charge is to address the environmental, social, political, and economic challenges we all face. We look forward to enhancing this important initiative with people-to-people exchanges to inspire and connect the next generation of conservationists, filmmakers and leaders in Africa who will create lasting change to protect their natural environment. This partnership represents an innovative way forward to address some of the most pressing issues of our time.”

 USAID’s conservation programming plays a critical role in ensuring the world’s most vulnerable people can secure their health and well-being while managing and conserving their natural wealth. Through partnerships with governments, communities, and the private sector in 60 countries, USAID works to protect biological systems and improve the lives of people who depend on them. These conservation activities also reduce greenhouse gas emissions and increase carbon storage. USAID’s nature-based solutions are building people’s resilience, priority ecosystems, and economies to climate change.

Says Karl Fickenscher, Acting Assistant Administrator of the Bureau for Development, Democracy, and Innovation (DDI), USAID:

“National Geographic Kids Africa embodies USAID's new vision for global development that combines working together with our US State Department colleagues, our private sector partner, The Walt Disney Company, and our local Kenyan partner WildlifeDirect. We could not be prouder to stand alongside them, and perhaps most importantly, alongside the students, young environmentalists, and kids from communities across Africa, who will work to protect and conserve the world around them— today and in the future.”

The goal is partnering with African filmmakers to tell African stories around conservation and environmental themes to reach African and global audiences. In addition, National Geographic Kids Africa will further advance The Walt Disney Company’s longstanding commitment to environmental stewardship, which goes back to its founding more than 90 years ago. Walt Disney himself said that: “conservation isn’t just the business of a few people. It’s a matter that concerns all of us.” National Geographic Kids Africa is another way The Walt Disney Company focuses on helping to protect the planet.

Currently, in pre-production, the National Geographic Kids Africa programme is set for a mid-to-late 2022 rollout across Africa.