Collaborating for Change in Nairobi
Nairobi’s ever-expanding population has put huge strain on transport infrastructure, housing, and waste management in the city. Is future development sustainable and how can people get their voices heard?
My Mark: My City’s lead in Nairobi, Carol Wambui, brought together diverse organisations to tackle this question. Under the title Nai-O’clock, they used creative tactics to help engaged residents take action on environmental issues in their city.
We partnered with community arts organisation Hoperaisers, artist collective Creative Spills, urban planners from Nairobi county government, local university students and community champions to plan collaborative actions that would make Nairobi greener and cleaner for all. As Carol noted, the events were distinctive in being “focused on action, and not just talk” and in “bringing people together with their government officials to work together towards sustainable actions”.
The results were striking. Two of the workshop participants have been invited to join Nairobi county government’s Urban Development Committee as voices for sustainable development. Alongside this, the county government invited the group to take the lead in organising the annual Place Making Week. The team will collaborate with other stakeholders to implement actions from the co-created workshop that align with the county government’s sustainable development agenda.
Imagine what could be achieved if this powerful model of state-citizen creative collaboration could take place across every city in Africa.