We all grow up with stories and nursery rhymes. Stories are everywhere and are passed down from one generation to the next. For over a year, the UN Information Centre (UNIC) Windhoek has been working on a project to bring to life a local character to introduce the lessons of the Sustainable Development Goals to the Namibian child. The end result is, “Frieda and the Sustainable Development Goals.”
Story telling is a powerful communication tool, children’s stories help children remember lessons and virtues that they will use in everyday life. The idea behind the production of the story book was to simplify the lesson of the global goals so young children can relate to and better understand the SDGs.
The story is about a young Namibian girl called Frieda, who learns about the SDGs. With colourful illustrations and local Namibian landmarks and scenery, Frieda embarks on a wonderful adventure through the 17 goals. Her dress is a vibrant African print, with the colours of the SDGs and the SDG wheel weaved into the design. Frieda wears sneakers with the Namibian flag, popularized by a local artist. She is a happy Namibian girl who explores the Goals, learning big words and meeting people as she goes along.
The distribution of Frieda and the SDGs will be done through a “Story hour with the UN” across Namibia. The story of Frieda will come alive when the story is read aloud to a young audience. The production of a recording is intended to accompany the book, which will be especially useful in the regions. The Centre will collaborate with community radio stations to reach a large audience in the country. “Story hour with the UN” will be a programme running in schools.
To make Frieda a household name and advocate of the SDGs, we intend to collaborate with women’s empowerment organizations to help sew puppets of Frieda to enrich the story telling experience through puppet shows. Frieda will take Namibia by storm and will help UNIC Windhoek bring the global goals to life for our local audience.
In Namibia, the SDGs are integrated into the country’s National Development plans.