“IMAGINE BWINDI” MUSIC VIDEO LAUNCHED ON WORLD WILDLIFE DAY

March 3, 2015

In partnership with the Uganda Poverty and Conservation Learning Group (U-PCLG), PCI Media Impact today launched a conservation music video (and related materials) titled:“Imagine Bwindi” to commemorate World Wildlife Day, 3rd March 2015.

The song and video celebrate the many beautiful and varied forms of wildlife of Bwindi Impenetrable National Park (BINP) in Uganda, while raising awareness of the relationship between the park and the communities living around it.

PCI Media Impact, an international communications NGO that uses the power of alternative media to inspire positive social and environmental change, collaborated with U-PCLG in the creation of the Mpa Mpa Nkuwe Communication Program to strengthen the ability of the group to communicate important conservation and development messages through alternative media, such as talk shows, music videos, and comic strips.

Mpa, Mpa Nkuwe”, which literally means “give me and I will give you”, celebrates the beautiful natural resources of BINP and the surrounding Batwa communities.

Background

Bwindi is home to an estimated 400 endangered mountain gorillas. Located in the Albertine Rift Valley, it is considered to be part of one of the most biologically rich ecosystems on Earth, with a large number of endemic species, and has been recognized by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) as a World Heritage Site for its biological and historical significance.

But conserving Bwindi, and excluding local communities from using its resources, raises many problems:

“Some of us live on land near the Park. At times, we have raised money to buy the seeds and we have grown Irish potatoes near the boundary. Then when the elephants come and destroy our gardens and eat all the potatoes, we lose a lot of money and income. There is no money. I go there to cut timber to sell to replace the money I have lost because of the poverty caused by the crop raiding,” said a community member living in close proximity to Bwindi.

About the Mpa Mpa Nkuwe Communication Program 

Recognizing these difficulties, U-PCLG wanted to use Imagine Bwindi to raise awareness about the need for equal and fair distribution of the costs and benefits of conserving the invaluable natural resources of Bwindi Impenetrable National Park. The music video stars Richard Kawesa – a gifted musician, who has previously written soundtracks for award-winning movies such as The Last King of Scotland. U-PCLG organized a trip to Bwindi to give Kawesa and his film crew the chance to find inspiration and capture some of the unique and genuine Bwindi experience for the music video.

“The music video is part of a larger, Entertainment-Education trans-media campaign which has the power to ‘turn up the volume’ on critical conservation issues, “said Sean Southey, PCI Media Impact’s Panta Kasoma, JGI-Uganda’s Country Director further explains the need for a partnership of this nature.

“We have previously used workshops, posters and flyers as a means of conveying conservation messages. We thought it was high time we tried a different approach which we think will appeal to a broader spectrum of stakeholders. Imagine Bwindi is a beautiful music video to watch and I believe the message it conveys will make people think more about equity in sharing the benefits of protected areas.”

This project is funded by the UK Government’s Darwin Initiative and by the Arcus Foundation.

However, the views expressed herewith do not necessarily reflect the views of the UK Government or the Arcus Foundation.

About U-PCLG

Uganda Poverty and Conservation Learning Group (U-PCLG) is a learning network that brings together Ugandan conservationists and development practitioners to share their experiences and to work together to better inform development and conservation policy and practice. U-PCLG is coordinated by the Jane Goodall Institute (JGI) Uganda, with support from the International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED).

About PCI Media Impact

PCI Media Impact uses the power of broadcast media to empower communities worldwide to inspire positive social, health and environmental change through storytelling and creative communications.

Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, Uganda Tuesday, 3 March 2015

For Immediate Release

For more information, interviews, video footage, contact Hellena Nambogwe at +256782469979 or email at hnambogwe@gmail.com