BY PSCU and MWAKERA MWAJEFA
Kenyan youths have been challenged to use their talents in the arts and culture as an economic activity that has the potential of generating income for them.
The arts and culture, according to the First Lady Margaret Kenyatta, present vast opportunities for the youth to apply their creativity or innovation to not only generate money but also employment.
“We must encourage our youth to pursue the arts and culture as a new frontier towards economic development for the future,” she said.
She was speaking on Thursday (June 13) when she officially opened a photo exhibition by diplomats based in the country dubbed, ‘Kenya Through the Diplomats Lens’.
The Exhibition celebrates Kenya’s diversity and also provides appreciation of culture, heritage and harmony through photographs.
As a result of its empowerment and mentorship projects, Mrs Kenyatta says it will also have great social impact that will inspire and nurture the talents of its youth in photo-art.
The photo display showcased a unique collection of photographs taken by members of the diplomatic community in Kenya illustrating the nation’s beauty and diversity.
It also featured photographs taken by students from Kibera sponsored by the Nikon Photo School, who through pictures, communicated their thoughts, imagination and passion.
“We are also here to appreciate the remarkable talents of our youth who have participated by showcasing their creative work through images presented at this event,” she said.
Proceeds from the sale of the photographs will go towards supporting Destiny Children’s Centre which caters for orphaned children in Kibera and Karika Care Giving Centre for the elderly in Kawangware, Nairobi.
On environmental conservation, Mrs Kenyatta said the photo exhibition depicted different aspects of the country and reminded all Kenyans of the need to pay special attention to the environment.
“Land, air and water are all central to our survival. We must be deliberate in our actions to protect and preserve it for future generations. We are all custodians of this planet,” she added.
Sports, Culture and Heritage cabinet secretary Amina Mohamed said the exhibition was a step in the right direction as it promoted the preservation of the country’s cultural and national heritage.
She pointed out that the event created a new watermark in the recognition of photography as form of art with immense economic potential.
“We will collectively work to see the expansion of this space as a source of livelihood for many,” the CS said noting that the cultural and creative sector is increasingly being recognised as an engine that powers job creation.
Other speakers included National Museums of Kenya Director General Mzalendo Kibunjia and Iraqi Amb. Burhan Al-Jaf who is also the chairman of the ‘Kenya Through the Diplomat’s Lens’ photo exhibition.
Earlier at State House Nairobi, the First Lady hosted the chief executive officer of Save a Child’s Heart (SACH) Rina Attias at a meeting where they discussed the challenges facing children from poor families born with heart conditions.
SACH is an international non-profit organization that works to save lives by improving the quality and accessibility of cardiac care for children.
Mrs Kenyatta, who is the patron of the Kenyan chapter of SACH, was briefed on the progress made by the organization in helping 48 Kenyan children to undergo complex heart surgeries in Israel.
The organization also runs a training programme for Kenyan paediatric cardiologist and cardiac surgeons in Israel.
The First Lady commended the organization for its outstanding charitable work and promised to continue to supporting its programmes.