By Moulid Hujale
As the world celebrates the international day of peace, Somali youth around the world are making efforts to contribute to peace in their country by creating forums and programs that bring them together in the spirit of peace building in Somalia.
Badbaado Team, a young dedicated Somali youth group in Nairobi has taken the initiative to produce short films to create awareness on variety of social issues including drug abuse, tribalism and human trafficking in their quest to mobilize youth for peace.
“Tribalism is an enemy of peace and in this campaign, we are working hard to eradicate tribalism from our people by using the power of the camera and social media to educate the public on the importance of peace and the drawbacks of tribalism” said Hussein Abdi Noor, the head of Badbaado team
Founded in April this year, the group has attracted huge followers online and has registered about 73 members from around the world.
“We are targeting to register 500 members in our first phase and hopefully expand our activities in Somalia which is our primary target,” said Abdirahman Samadon, Co-founder of the Badbaado Team.
Taking advantage of the rising digital social media platforms, the group has produced several short films and talk shows. The films are youth friendly, in the form of drama and entertainment delivering the messages effectively to the youths.
The impact of their work is growing and touching the intended audience faster than imagined. “After releasing our Human Trafficking film, we have received a lot of positive feedback from the Somali youth we have been addressing and the most encouraging one was when one young man who had the intention to be smuggled told us that we changed his mind,” said Noor. “If we save one life, that is a big achievement for us” he added.
Hailing from and working with a patricidal community, Naziid Ahmed, one of the group’s founding members has made it against all odds from film acting to public speaking as the only female in the team since the establishment. However, she is proud to have achieved a lot in a short period of time.
“I am excited to see an overwhelming female turn out during our first membership registration where we now have 67 percent female members. This gives me the courage to continue working hard to break the barrier and bring girls on board to air their voices and contribute to the social change.” She said.
The team mainly depends on membership contribution as source of income, which they use to carry out their activities but Abdalla Kaneec, also among the founding members says that although money is required for every single activity, it will never be a reason for their campaign to stop.
“There is no active external donors supporting our programs currently but that should not hinder us from reaching out to our people. Nevertheless, we would appeal – first of all to our Somali community wherever they are to support us both mentally and financially so that together we can solve our own problems by ourselves. Secondly, I would like to appeal to the international community, the UN in particular to support our endeavor to bring change to our community,” he said.