The country programme in Zambia focus on the impact of environment degradation on children’s rights.  More specifically, TDH’s implementing partner and groups of children and youth portray situations that create risks and that impair children’s opportunities and rights to life, health, education and development in general and engage duty bearers to undertake remedial actions.  The program runs in Livingston and in the mining city of Kabwe.

Project Example

Child and Youth Participation through Photo Voice

Photovoice is a community-based participatory research method that seeks to enable children to portray and improve their social realities. The main objective of the project was to create a platform for the development of safe spaces for children and their engagement in child protection-related social activism in Malota and Maramba townships in Livingston town in Zambia.  Malota and Maramba are characterised by high levels of violence and child-rights violations. Through the project, children managed to frame their own meanings and understanding of safety through the use of photographs, narratives and dialogues on safety and or lack thereof. The children in Livingstone hosted photo exhibitions to engage policy- and decision-makers, sensitised members of the public to their understandings of safety, and exercised their agency to stimulate change.

Results: During the exhibitions, attended by the Mayor of Livingstone, the children highlighted what they viewed as safe and unsafe spaces in their communities. They also showed pictures of poor waste management, polluted rivers, unsafe crossing bridges and other issues.

A week after the exhibition with, the garbage heap in front of three schools was removed. The councillors conducted inspections to sites highlighted by children through their photographs and started repairing roads. In Maramba, the Councillor committed to help with establishing regular door-to door collection of waste from people s’ houses, which has started soon afterwards.

The project, implemented by Environment Africa in partnership with the Institute for Social and Health Sciences at the University of South Africa, uses photo voice as a methodology to enhance children and youth participation.