Interviews: Behind The Scenes Of Form Ni Gani Campaign With Kevo Abbra

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Picture courtesy Anyiko

Form Ni Gani is a movement made by Kenyans for Kenyans. The movement was established on April 17th 2018 with an aim to invoke Kenyans into having crucial conversations, on matters that we go through in our daily lives.

The roots of the project began by working directly with young progressive Kenyans to better understand their views on both their future plans as well as family planning. 

Since conception is a holistic process that governs the beginning of a person’s life Form Ni Gani seeks to spread positivity and illuminate the need for contraceptives when making informed decisions that affect our collective future. Female Contraceptives: Are Women Aware Of All The Options?

In light of this FNG campaign, which happened in Nairobi city centre, we sat down with Kevo Abbra, who gave us an exclusive of how the Form Ni Gani campaign came to be.

Kevo Abbra is a Creative and progressive thinker who is part of the Form ni gani campaign. Picture Courtesy of Anyiko
  1. What is the Form Ni Gani campaign about?

FORM NI GANI is an awareness campaign that sensitizes on the importance of family planning and how if not considered or practised may affect our future. The movement is created with and for Kenyans.

It is lead by Kenyan creatives, including poets, comedians, street artists, musicians, bloggers, dancers, photographers, and other kind of artists.

The campaign is driven by the urge to create a better future and articulate aspirations as early as now.

As you saw the campaign was tailored to link contraception to critical issues, pathways and solutions for Kenya. By including young minds/youths who made the backbone and voice of the campaign, our aim was to get their perspective on contraception in modern Kenya. This way, we can work towards reframing and rebranding contraception in the fresh Kenyan context.

Female president with the public to exchange ideas on family planning, contraceptives and important decisions that define the future. Picture courtesy of Anyiko
  1. What inspired this year’s theme of the Form Ni Gani campaign?

The future in 2063, hence the Afrofuturistic feel of the campaign. Our focus is on creatively engaging thinking more about future dreams, plans and different scenarios we face as a country. 

By bringing Kenyan citizens, including a fictional president from the future to Nairobi, we wanted to create a sense of urgency and importance, around critical issues and topics that shape the future of Kenya. These include; youth unemployment, teenage pregnancy and the need for contraception.

Kenyan president from the future at the Form ni gani campaign. Picture courtesy Anyiko

Through art, we also illuminated on national and political agendas such as the 4 pillars, national and county budget planning, 2019 census and politics in general. This was a chance to spark conversation through art and gauge the views that Kenyans have for the future, today.

Male Contraceptives: What Are The Available Options And What Are Their Advantages and Disadvantages?

  1. Kindly take us through the creative process. What are some of the artistic elements you factored when coming up with the outfits for the campaign?

The creative process factored change and the vision of how 2063 would look like, also in terms of technology.  So we broke down the campaign into four parts.

The time portal used by the future president and his team to travel through time. Picture courtesy Anyiko
  • The activation kicked off first bringing Kenyan’s pregnant president and entourage from 2063 to Kenya. We felt that by having the future president both female and pregnant we could start a conversation about the role of women in leadership as well as how families might function in the future.

On June 27th we held an event at the National Archives where Kenyans came to meet the president and her entourage.

Pregnant female president marches with her brigade in town. Picture courtesy Anyiko
  • The form ni gani photo Exhibition once again was a spotlight on Kenyans from all walks of life but with a twist. The pictures showed how they are currently and what they will look like in 2063. They also shared their personal dreams and their visions/aspirations for their future.
  • We had a #formnigani future challenge that called upon all Kenyans to share their personal dreams for the future. We also had a superb crew of Kenyan creatives who were centre stage, creating content intended to prompt all Kenyans to start talking about their dreams.
Kenyan female president from the future poses for a selfie with her citizens. Picture courtesy Anyiko
  • In November the form ni gani platform will host unique debates and series of events where Kenyans will come together in creative new ways to discuss their own dreams and debate about the scenarios we face as a country and the need for contraception.
  1. How did the artistic elements come together?

I believe the artistic elements of FNG from the portal, props and the outstanding costumes for the warriors; the president and her aides, all these elements came together to bring out a story about the characters and them coming back from the future to the current times.

The Form Ni Gani Daily is a collaboration with different contributors, including the students of the University of Nairobi School of Journalism who shared wonderful ideas and news articles on this project. 

 

  1. Comment on the effectiveness of the props, music, fashion/costumes, newspaper used in this year’s FGN campaign. How did these tools influence the outcome of the campaign and facilitate interaction?

#formnigani is a movement driven by Kenyan creatives to magnify the voices of young Kenyans on crucial issues like family planning.

Female president, her soldiers and Kenyan young supporters pose for a picture. Picture courtesy Anyiko

The Form Ni Gani Daily newspaper was a part of the campaign’s creative movement for contraception and was intended to showcase an alternate future. It takes a look into Kenya’s future, in regards to future planning and contraception. 

I believe the props, costumes and including the technology used, played a major role in supporting the essence of Form Ni Gani campaign. The bright colours, the brigade of soldiers marching around town alongside the female president, the newspaper and the portal sparked conversations that were unified by one common factor: the future is real and it is upon us the citizens of today.

Female president arrives from the future through the time portal. Behind her is the brigade of female soldiers. Picture courtesy Anyiko

Sure, time travel can’t alter the course of history. Neither can it shape the future possibilities of Kenya. It’s only Kenyans of 2019 who can decide the course of their country’s fate.

Therefore, our hope is to get Kenyans thinking, talking, and making informed decisions about the future. The props, music, fashion/costumes, newspaper used, engaged the crowd more as they experienced every element in real-life settings. This is as opposed to only having to watch the proceedings on a particular platform. The avenues used were diverse meaning it would reach out to a more diverse audience.

  1. What new creative strategies did you use in this Year’s campaign to facilitate more engagement and spread awareness?

The campaign took place on social media (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter) and on avenues like the archives where Kenyans met and talked. 

From left. female president from the future shakes hand with Jaymo Ule Msee. Picture courtesy Anyiko

We also had one on one interactions with the people during the exhibition and launch day. Music artists, influencers and other artists were also involved, facilitating more engagement and awareness.

  1. How was art used to reflect and capture history, culture, economic and political trends in Kenya? What difference would there be if an alternative medium/channel was used?

Art has been used to reflect and capture history, culture, economic and political trends in photography, music, art shows, exhibitions and the likes.

Picture courtesy Anyiko

If we used an alternative medium the outcome would’ve been different. Think of events that focus more on the experience of the people. A good example was the FORM NI GANI campaign which enabled people to interact and experience what it was all about first hand.

  1. Kindly describe the current mindset of Kenyans in regards to the future. Where are we and what can be done to get to the developed future that we saw from 2063?

As Kenyans, our socialization is very different and it influences how our current times are. The goal of this campaign isn’t to tell people how many children they should have or what family planning method they should use. The agenda is to influence Kenyans to have a plan based on facts.

Picture courtesy Anyiko

The Kenyan Constitution guarantees the right to the highest standard of reproductive health. The Health Act of 2017 Section 6(1) (a) guarantees every adult Kenyan the right to safe, effective, affordable and acceptable family planning services.

Despite the crucial role of contraception in our future, our families’, and our nation – and the right to family planning being guaranteed by our Constitution and Health Act, many Kenyans still lack access to both family planning methods and information. Neither do we talk enough about these issues and the impact contraception has on women, families, society and even the future of our country.  

Form Ni Gani campaign. Picture courtesy Anyiko

By joining the movement, Kenyans can help spread the good word about family planning and make the existing support and need for family planning visible to decision-makers. 

Nonetheless, we cannot ignore the fact that effective systems and institutions, need to be put in place for us to attain that developed future we saw from 2063. We also need to change our leadership and structures if at all we are to see change or progress. Otherwise, we will be worse off than we are yet time keeps on ticking away.

9. How long will the campaign run?

The movement should continue until all adult Kenyans have access to safe, effective, affordable and acceptable family as guaranteed in the Kenyan Constitution and the Health Act of 2017. 

You can join the Form Ni Gani movement on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram and get to plan for the future now, for a better Kenya, tomorrow.

Speaking of Form Ni Gani check out some of the creative stories we wrote around the issue of family planning

Life Like A Lady Part 8: Me, Him & The Awkward Contraceptives Conversation In the Middle Of A Steamy Romantic Moment

Could She Have It All, A Dream Job And A Family? How A Microwave Helped Her Make A Decision

She Had To Give Up Her Dreams Because Of Tradition But She Was Not Going To Let The Same Fate Befall Her Daughter

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