Can a TV show change the way people cook in Kenya? Shamba Chef aims to do just that
NAIROBI, KENYA – Families across Kenya will soon learn about clean cooking on their TVs and radios, thanks to a new series titled Shamba Chef. Premiering on September 17, Shamba Chef will take viewers inside Kenyan homes, to watch as families learn how to prepare more nutritious meals while testing out a new stove or fuel that makes cooking “quicker, safer, cleaner, and at half the cost.”
The weekly series will air in both English and Swahili on Citizen TV, Kenya’s most popular TV station, and each episode will be adapted for a weekly radio series. A free mobile based platform called iChef will give subscribers access to additional content, including nutritious recipes and cooking tips.
In Kenya, eight out of ten people cook with heavily-polluting solid fuels like wood and charcoal, causing widespread environmental and health impacts that disproportionally affect women and children. Many cleaner cooking options exist in Kenya, from improved charcoal stoves to clean burning fuels like LPG, yet many people are not aware of these options or have not prioritized them.
Shamba Chef was created with support from the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves, as part of its effort to use communication to motivate households to purchase and adopt cleaner cooking solutions. Content for the series was developed in collaboration with the Alliance’s partners in Kenya.
“Based on our research, we know that over 80% of the targeted population regularly watch television and listen to the radio. This means a program like Shamba Chef can be a powerful delivery system for information and ultimately, to inspire people to switch to cleaner cookstoves and fuels.” said Julie Ipe, Senior Manager of Market Insight & Behavior Change at the Alliance.
The series is produced by the Mediae Company, an award-winning producer of entertaining and educational media that promote changes in knowledge, attitudes, and practices amongst East African audiences. Mediae produces several other popular shows in Kenya, including East Africa’s leading agricultural TV program, Shamba Shape Up, which is now in its 7th season and reaches up to 3 million viewers weekly. An assessment of the most recent season of Shamba Shape Up found that 80% of viewers reported learning something new, and 43% – equaling an estimated 2 million people across Kenya – made changes to their farming practices as a result of watching the show. Clean cooking is also being featured on 10 episodes of Shamba Shape Up.
Shamba Chef is complemented by an Alliance-supported community outreach intervention, led by PS Kenya in 17 counties in Central and Western Kenya. PS Kenya is working with community-based organizations to conduct door to door and small group communication on the benefits of clean cooking, as well as market events and cooking demonstrations. Mediae and PS Kenya were awarded support via the Alliance’s Clean Cooking BCC Fund—a portfolio of grants aimed at scaling demand and use of clean cooking solutions. The interventions supported under the BCC Fund are externally evaluated to measure their impact on behavioral change related to clean cooking. Additional BCC-related resources, materials, and tools for anyone designing, implementing, and/or evaluating behavior change communication activities can be found on the BCC Resource Hub.
For more information on the Alliance’s behavior change communication work, visit http://cleancookstoves.org/market-development/demand-creation/behavior-change-communication.html
About the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves:
The Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves is a public-private partnership hosted by the United Nations Foundation that seeks to save lives, improve livelihoods, empower women, and protect the environment by creating a thriving global market for clean and efficient household cooking solutions. The Alliance’s 100 by ’20 goal calls for 100 million households to adopt cleaner and more efficient cookstoves and fuels by 2020. The Alliance is working with its public, private and non-profit partners to accelerate the production, deployment, and use of clean cookstoves and fuels in developing countries.
About The Mediae Company:
The Mediae Company is a successful producer of entertaining and educational media that promote changes in knowledge, attitudes and practices amongst East African audiences. They currently produce two highly successful Kenyan TV series: a drama set in a peri-urban village and a reality show targeting farmers with improved agricultural techniques.
About Population Services Kenya:
Population Services Kenya (PS Kenya) is Kenya’s largest BCC/social marketing organization and has 25 years’ experience of developing and implementing large-scale campaigns in health. They address the most serious health challenges affecting resource – poor and vulnerable communities in Kenya, including HIV/AIDS, reproductive health and family planning and the greatest threats to children under five including malaria, diarrhea, pneumonia and malnutrition.