Earlier this month, the BCP Trust was thrilled to receive its ‘coolest’ in-kind donation yet: professional comic artist, Naomi Fearn, created an informational comic about deforestation, climate change and REDD+ specifically for our Community Engagement Team to use when promoting sensitization and awareness about BCP’s REDD+ project activities.
The informational comic, in addition to being visually appealing, is extremely helpful in that it allows us to expand our message to all community stakeholders, including those who are illiterate. BCP takes seriously our mission to reach as many community stakeholders as possible and to involve them in sensitization and consultation efforts, in line with the principle of obtaining Free, Prior and Informed Consent (FPIC). As of April 2013, BCP calculates that we have sensitized 86% of community stakeholders living within the Project Zone for the Lower Zambezi REDD+ Project, and among those we have consulted, we have received a 96% approval rate.
Since its initial launch at local community stakeholder meetings, the comic has already begun to transform the way that BCP communicates with community stakeholders about REDD+. The comic allows us to take participants through an illustrated narrative about deforestation, climate change and REDD+ activities, which is often instructive and entertaining at the same time. BCP also leaves copies of the comic, available in Engligh and Nyanja versions, in local communities, allowing them to read about BCP’s work in their own way and on their own time, and to promote sensitization among themselves in ways that are locally appropriate.