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Theatre at the Kawabata Yasunari School in Hann for World Ocean Day

The Kawabata Yasunari Primary School in Hann, which has been collaborating for several years with Mundus maris on the occasion of World Oceans Day (WOD), celebrated the 2021 edition by organising a sketch under the artistic direction of Bina Diop, artist actor and key resource person of the Mundus maris team from Senegal. The choice to celebrate the occasion with a focus on artistic expression was proposed and validated by the school leadership during a preparatory meeting held on May 25 between Aliou Sall and the school director, Madame Diouf, in the presence of some members of the teaching staff and Bina Diop.

The piece presented was rehearsed with the student actors a few weeks before the World Ocean Day celebration. Bina has indeed developed a script based on the inspirational text of the 2021 edition the theme of which is "The Ocean: Life and livelihoods". This is the sequel to several plays on ocean pollution and its effects that have been performed with school children in Hann on previous World Ocean Days. But this year's theme was added value for the sketch produced in 2021.

Indeed, the play has sensitized an exceptional audience - by its size - on the dangers of pollution for the health of the ocean. Also thanks to the artistic ingenuity of Bina and the preparation which had taken place, it sensitized the school community primarily on the following aspects:

  • The impact of ocean pollution on the living conditions of the people depending particularly strongly on healthy ecosystems for their daily lives;

  • The incivism of those people who bear a large part of responsibility for the poor state of health of an ecosystem of the importance of the coastal zone of the ocean;

  • The impérative need to adopt a civic behaviour, to show civility and to accept the share of responsibility of each and everyone, individually speaking, in order to preserve the state of health of the ocean: populations, political decision-makers at the national level, local elected officials in charge of the management of municipalities, companies.

The performance was not limited to the sketch. Indeed it was a lively theatre piece with songs composed for the occasion, all intended to provoke an awakening of consciousness on the part of the audience.

We draw some lessons from this exceptional event compared to those that took place in this same partner school in earlier occasions:

Mundus maris, through the person of Madame Diouf, the director, can count on a very committed team eager to develop a more formal and more continuous collaboration. This is what the director said while speaking at the end of the sketch, thanking our team and thus underlining once again their great availability already demonstrated during the preparation phase.

There was an exceptional mobilisation of all the school's teaching staff, who came to watch the performance. For the first time, all the teaching staff left the class rooms to celebrate World Ocean Day in the presence also of some parents of students who had the time to participate.

It was after the presentation of the play that Aliou Sall was invited to deliver the closing remarks. During his address, Mr Sall expressed the immeasurable satisfaction felt this year after all the time since Mundus Maris he represents started working with this school. He gave the assurance for the future collaboration with the noted commitment of the side of the director and teachers. Some of the teachers have been involved for some years already. On behalf of Mundus maris he presented a book on the ocean to Madame Diouf as a symbolic response for all the great work she has done with her team for this 2021 WOD edition.

Photos M. Souleymane Sow.