#Art4Resilience: Announcing the 2023 Knowledge-into-Use award winners

#Art4Resilience: Announcing the 2023 Knowledge-into-Use award winners

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Date: 12th February 2024
Author: June Kimaiyo
Type: News

The Resilience Evidence Coalition, a network consisting of the Global Resilience Partnership (GRP), CDKN and the International Centre for Climate Change and Development (ICCCAD) has announced the second round of the Knowledge-into-Use awards. The awards celebrate creativity, embrace innovation and showcase the latest resilience evidence. 

This post originally appeared on the Global Resilience Partnership’s website.

A total of 90 applications were received from various organisations and after careful judging, we selected four winners across three categories: performing arts, visualising evidence and participatory approaches connecting arts and science. Each winner will receive a prize of 100,000 Swedish Krona (about US$8,900) and support in showcasing their work.

Meet the winners:

Performing for Change

Performing for Change (Cred. Noble Arts Entertainment and GRP)
Noble Arts Entertainment and GRP

Noble Arts Entertainment, a youth-led creative organisation situated in Bamenda, Cameroon, aims to equip young people with the necessary skills and resources to utilise the arts, particularly theatre and film, to raise awareness and challenge their local communities. Their “Performing for Change” project tackles food insecurity, a problem exacerbated by violence and climate change in the conflict-affected northwest region of Cameroon. The Anglophone regions of Cameroon are especially affected by these issues, making it increasingly difficult for farmers to cultivate crops, resulting in food shortages and malnutrition. 

This project targets 300 young people and families affected by the ongoing crisis in the region. They organise theatre and entertainment workshops, as well as community engagement and educational activities focused on sustainable agricultural practices. The performance itself combines elements of storytelling, music and movement, all centred around the experiences of individuals and communities in the Northwest Region. Resilience and collective efforts are key themes in their performances. By highlighting the resilience displayed in the face of adversity, the theatre performance aims to inspire action and promote innovative and sustainable solutions.

In Which Language Does the Rain Fall?

Art by Natasha Sharma and Namrata Narendran through art workshops with the Govandi youth group (Cred. Moin Khan, Community Design Agency and GRP)
Moin Khan, Community Design Agency and GRP

Community Design Agency (CDA) is a social design organisation based in Mumbai, India. They believe that architecture, design and arts can be used to promote equity, justice and inclusion. They collaborate closely with the most impacted communities residing in inadequately built environments to create safer spaces and enhance climate resilience in their neighbourhoods.  

As part of their neighbourhood regeneration efforts, their project In Which Language Does the Rain Fall? aims to collaborate with the residents of one of the most affected Resettlement and Rehabilitation (R&R) colonies in Mumbai’s Govandi, Natwar Parekh compound. This colony houses 25,000 people across 61 buildings on five hectares of land, with each house being as tiny as 21 square metres. As a result of poor planning, more than 70% of residents live without access to proper sunlight, air ventilation or open spaces in and around their homes. From reclaiming public spaces, co-creating a community library, to organising the first ever Govandi Arts festival, CDA’s initiatives with the residents of Govandi are focused on the intersection of health and well-being, livelihoods, gender rights and safety, and local governance. CDA believes that communities have deep insights into the workings of their environment and base their approach on this community knowledge.

Through the Knowledge-into-Use award, Natasha Sharma, Public Arts and Design Lead at CDA, is collaborating with climate educators Nikhil Sharma and Himanshu Meena of Elementree, to work with young adults and women in Govandi. Through participatory arts and storytelling approaches, they are facilitating a series of creative workshops to localise, vocalise and visualise a vernacular vocabulary for climate communication with young people in relation to climate change impacts in their neighbourhood.

Amava Oluntu - Youth Visions in a Changing Climate

Youth Visions in a Changing Climate (Cred. Amava Oluntu and GRP)
Amava Oluntu and GRP

Youth Visions in a Changing Climate is a collective project anchored at Amava Oluntu and combines artists, activists, researchers and practitioners from HandCantrol360, the Beach Coop, Centre for Sustainability Transitions at Stellenbosch University and the City of Cape Town. While the project is intergenerational, the focus of the project is on youth visions for more just and flourishing futures in times of climate, environmental and social change within a cityscape. 

The project builds on multiple collaborations, including work connected to Youth Nature Futures, Pollinating Pride in People, Stories for a Better Tomorrow and uses arts-based and participatory approaches to democratise science in public spaces, strengthen transformative capacities and jointly envision what a resilient, thriving and connected Cape Town can look and feel like for current and future generations. Through a series of workshops, the collective has co-designed a mural that will be painted in a public space in November/December 2023, combined with an immersive ocean experience as an invitation for learning, healing, connection and dialogue on how to co-create the change that is needed. 

Climate Change Scenario to Informed Community-Based Adaptation and Planning in Nepal (CCSICAPN)

Students of Kalika School contribute to the first-ever scientific mural art organized in Rajapur in Bardiya, Nepal (Cred. Skanda Gautam:Youth Innovation Lab and GRP)
Skanda Gautam/Youth Innovation Lab and GRP

The Youth Innovation Lab (YI-Lab) operates within the Rajapur municipality, which is situated between the Geruwa and Karnali rivers. Despite having established early warning systems, this area is susceptible to floods that significantly disrupt the lives of the local community, leading to economic losses from submerged houses and farmlands. The long-term effects of such disasters present challenges in effectively communicating their consequences. 

The YI-Lab employs an innovative approach by combining data-driven decision-making with data visualisation tools, such as risk maps, and incorporating them into visual art forms like murals. This creative approach aims to raise awareness among communities residing in disaster-prone regions, empowering them to better comprehend the risks they face. They have previously developed a flood hazard map with a 100 year flood return period, including essential infographics and illustrative elements showcasing early warning systems, disaster alert helplines and relevant websites. This map served as a reference for creating the actual mural. Together with the map, drawings from 30 curious and artistic children were used to craft a unique mural placed in the surrounding area. 

They will use the Knowledge-into-Use award to create murals, which serve as a powerful means of conveying essential flood-related information and portraying stories of human resilience. These murals will depict the implementation of early warning systems, provide information about flood risks, and provide guidance on understanding data and information for the community to make informed decisions regarding flood risk mitigation and adaptation. By doing so, this initiative aims to drive advocacy and policy changes, promoting the adoption of data-driven decision-making in municipal-level planning for community safety.

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