Our Every Last Child Campaign Ambassador, Anne Kansiime, is well known in Uganda and across Africa as the ‘Queen of Comedy’. She makes everyone in Uganda - men, women, young, old, those in cities, those in the villages - laugh.
Anne is less well known, however, for her singing voice. So, when Anne offered to produce a song for Save the Children Uganda - her first ever song to be released to the public - we said, at first, “can you sing!?” And then, “of course”. We knew that Anne’s profile could help us to promote our campaign to those we otherwise wouldn’t be able to reach.
Anne has already been using her popularity in Uganda to help us to raise the profile of our Every Last Child Campaign. Our campaign in Uganda is about reaching children living in the remotest areas. These children have been left behind in the country’s development and are less likely to survive, learn and be protected. If you live in Karamoja in Eastern Uganda, for example, you are twice as likely to die before the age of five than if you live in the capital, Kampala. Children living in Karamoja are also 12 times less likely than children in Kampala to go to pre-primary school. And girls living in remote areas are more likely to marry when they’re still children. The average age of marriage in Northern Uganda is just 16 years old.
During our campaign launch event in April, Anne, told politicians about her experience growing up in remote Western Uganda and explained that it was by luck alone that she has become the star that she has. Anne also recently came with us, and the Minister for Youth and Children’s Affairs, to visit her home region. We took Anne and the Minister to see our programmes and show them what Save the Children is doing to help children from rural areas in the West. We also used the opportunity to explain to the Minister what she can do to help us to reach these children.
Our new campaign song will allow us to spread our message even further. The most common way that people receive and share information in Uganda, is via the radio. Radio reaches more people than the internet, TV, even word of mouth. So, in the coming weeks, we will be using Anne’s popularity to push out our new campaign song to radio stations across Uganda, to allow our message to reach even the remotest parts of the country.
Anne will appear on Uganda’s NTV this Tuesday to officially release the song and tell the public that not only does she have a voice but that she is using it to tell policy makers to get behind Save the Children’s campaign and address the challenges faced by children living in the remote areas of Uganda.