Nairobi’s finest storytellers gathered at Kwani? to celebrate World Storytelling Day on Saturday 19th March, 2016 and consequently launched a global online writing contest via the Re-imagined Modern Tales website through which selected works will be published in an Anthology of New Tales to be used in school and community performances nation-wide.
The Storytelling Festival showcased a magical day of stories through interactive performances; reading nooks; workshops on illustrating, writing and poetry; an art exhibition and auction; a stories booth for the children to record their own stories and books stalls.
The theme for year 2016’s World Storytelling Day is ‘Strong Women’ and the day’s performances culminated in a riveting stage performance, where five of Nairobi’s most renowned actresses and poets, notably Sitawa Namwalie, Mumbi Kaigwa, Raya Wambui, Patricia Kihoro and Maimouna Jallow, re-interpreted five African novels by women authors for the stage.
Simba-Safe Kenya under the umbrella body of the Bloggers Association of Kenya (BAKE) facilitated a Teens Online Safety Training which focused on:
• Online safety & caution;
• Benefits of joining helpful online communities;
• Glaring risks of encountering Cyber bullies, internet trolls and stumbling upon pornographic sites;
• The risks that come with disclosing too much personal information online;
• Negative effects of joining the wrong forums; and
• General evils that come with anonymity provided by the internet.
The training was aimed at sensitizing young people about the risks that come with use of the internet and targeted children and their parents. Children are honing their writing skills and starting to make use of available new media and platforms for storytelling like blogs and their safety online is paramount.
The Storytelling festival is the first in a series of events by Positively African to promote oral storytelling and use the Modern Anthology of Tales to educate and engage both young and old alike on critical issues affecting the continent.