Last week, 9 March, Global Youth Coalition for Road Safety member Kenneth Mulinde joined an official side event during the African Youth SDG Summit, Africa’s largest youth forum on the Sustainable Development Goals. The event was hosted by the United Nations Road Safety Fund (UNRSF). The session was all about the projects the different organizations were implementing to ensure safe and sustainable mobility within their countries and sectors.

Representative organizations
The panel was composed of diverse speakers from the African region. The panelists include Bunmi Papoola-Mordi from TotalEnergies Nigeria, Claire Louise Sterngold from the YE! Community, Damiilola Olokesusi from Shuttlers, Rick Rapa Thomson from SafeBoda, and Kenneth Mulinde from the Youth Coalition. 

The different speakers touched on different opportunities for young people around entrepreneurship and road safety. During his opening statement, Jean Todt from the United Nations Special Envoy for Road Safety explained how road safety enables opportunities for young people. “Youth Entrepreneurs for Road Safety by the International Trade Center and the United Nations Road Safety Fund is an innovative way for youth to improve road safety using business solutions”. 

Nneka Henry shared how TotalEnergies are providing young leaders with similar opportunities through Start Upper, a project that supports young African Entrepreneurs in the creation of innovative startups to create positive impacts in their communities.

Art, youth, and road safety
During his intervention, Kenneth talked about how art can be used to mobilize and energize the youth movement for road safety.  To emphasize this point, Kenny shared how the Youth Coalition engages young people around the world through art and other creative mediums. For instance, one of the Youth Coalition campaigns, the Art for Road Safety challenge, used street art and dance to raise awareness around road safety and mobility issues in Africa. 

“These campaigns succeeded because we leveraged youth creativity. Creative activism is a way of empowering people” – Kenneth Mulinde 

He also discussed how he and his team from Youth Arts Movement Uganda implements his Local Actions project “Be Road Smart” utilizes art to highlight the road safety situation African women face when they commute and take public transport. “Art is used to communicate messages and to break down theories and literature. We turn these messages into images. At the Youth Coalition, art and creativity have been at the center of our programs”

Check out the full panel by watching the session!