UNICEF has joined forces with South African singer and songwriter Toya Delazy to produce a music video for her single Khula Khula (Grow Grow) from her new album Uncommodified. The aim is to raise awareness about the challenges girls in Africa face – such as violence, early marriage, exploitation, and harmful practices – all of which prevent girls from realizing their full potential and ability to participate in their communities.
The music video focuses on a girl, living alone in a forest, who dreams of a better life. By using her wits and ingenuity, she gathers discarded tools and machinery and builds her own airplane, which she uses to escape her situation. Meanwhile Toya cheers the girl on.
If girls in Africa can rise and soar, then so can the whole continent
“We wanted to highlight the silent and not-so-silent ways in which our girls experience exclusion and oppression,” Toya explained. “But there is also a positive message that expresses the strength that every girl carries within her spirit – the possibility and the will to rise above her circumstances.”
UNICEF says that in order for this to happen, the necessary investments must be made in health care, education, and the protection and empowerment of women and girls.
Toya is UNICEF’s Celebrity Champion of the Generation 2030 Africa – a movement focused on how Africa can realize a demographic dividend in the wake of the continent’s unprecedented youth demographic transition. UNICEF’s new report Generation 2030 2.0, which was released in October 2017, states that Africa’s child population is set to increase by 170 million by 2030, taking the number of under-18s on the continent to 750 million, all of whom will require governments to increase investments in quality services.
“I believe that each child should be provided basic health care and a quality education,” Toya Delazy said. “If girls in Africa can rise and soar, then so can the whole continent.”