First Lady Mama Rachel Ruto has urged Kenya’s vibrant youth to get involved in the film industry, encouraging them to weave compelling local narratives that meet the global standards demanded by international film distribution platforms.
Speaking at the closing ceremony of the NGO International Film Festival in Nairobi, Mama Rachel Ruto emphasised the importance of telling Kenyan stories authentically on the world stage.
The 2023 edition of the NGO International Film Festival focused on the pivotal role of film in amplifying messages on education, equality and climate change, in line with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.
The First Lady highlighted the importance of the film sector in the Kenyan government’s bottom-up economic transformation agenda, firmly positioning it under the digital superhighway and creative economy pillars.
This underscores the government’s commitment to working with stakeholders to expand the creative space, protect intellectual property rights and identify the necessary government incentives to boost production within the creative economy.
Mama Rachel Ruto highlighted the importance of government programmes such as Talanta Hela and urged aspiring filmmakers to take advantage of these opportunities to translate local memoirs and life stories into cinematic masterpieces. These initiatives, she said, are crucial in nurturing budding talents and catapulting them to global recognition.
The First Lady also urged the festival organisers to create a robust platform for industry professionals to impart their knowledge and skills to the younger generation.
Mama Rachel Ruto emphasised the need for collaboration between the NGO International Film Festival and the Kenya Film Commission, envisioning a future where Kenya’s film industry stands tall on the international stage.
She acknowledged the crucial role that filmmakers play in highlighting important human interest stories, societal issues and extraordinary destinations.
Films, she emphasised, have an unparalleled ability to engage and captivate audiences, sparking conversations and concerns that might otherwise go unnoticed.