Anita Soina,21 Is an Environmental Activist, Founder Of Spice Warriors Kenya, an Environmental Organization, Author Of The Green War and A brand Influencer.
Good morning Madam Anita and welcome to the MT. Kenya Time’s Newspaper, your number one daily e-paper.
Briefly tell us more about yourself.
I am a 21 year old Environmental Activist, final student currently pursuing a B.A. in Public Relations and Corporate Communication, at the Multimedia University of Kenya. I am passionate about social change with a strong inclination to environmental policy. With no educational background on environment conservation, i believe that should not be the reason not to be environmentally conscious.
With the modern-day global warming surge and Kenya having lost a huge percentage of forest cover, we need everyone on board and for that reason the then 18-year-old me founded SpiceWarriors to rally other young people in the protection of the environment. My team is also made up of people with no educational background on environment conservation as that’s her target audience.
Mention a few achievements you’re proud of.
Founding an organisation at 18 after discovering my passion at 17. At 20 I published my first book and now a Tedxparklands 2021 speaker .
How did your journey into environmental conservation begin?
I grew up spending most of my times with my grandfather who valued forests and trees, went to high school and joined scouting movement where tree planting was one of the activities. Still, by then I didn’t understand that it meant and after high school I met my mentor Sir Erick.I.Matsanza who took me through mentorship on a journey to discover my passion. I knew I wanted to become a positive social change catalyst in the society so he introduced me to SDGs and as I read about them I realized Climate Action deserves attention.
What has been your motivation on environmental conservation?
I honestly can say my team. I have a team of volunteers! Pure volunteers and they have walked with me since 2018 without giving up and showing me everyday how they get closer to conservation! It’s not easy to influence people in this direction.
You have authored a book ‘Green War’ which is a #best-seller. When did you decide you wanted to write the book and what keeps you motivated as an author?
When the lockdown was imposed.. I started by writing stories that ended up becoming chapters. Courtesy of my Editor and also mentor Chris Mukasa we did it.
This book unlike most voluminous conservation book, is a small 69 pager written with simple language for the people outside Climate movement to read and understand Why climate Action, WHY NOW!
I understand that you’re the founder of Spice Warriors Kenya, an Environmental Organization, what is it all about?
SpiceWarriors is a movement of young Environmental Warriors from all fields and careers who have been mentored and guided to be passionate environmentalists.
How do you manage being an active author, brand manager and an environmentalist?
At first it used to be easy but for sure at the moment I’m still struggling with it because under SpiceWarriors, we have 3 separate programs . Its overwhelming but I have to keep at it without forgetting my SpiceWarriors committee that have taken up different roles to help me .
Could you tell us a little about your campus award; as the Campus Lady of the year 2019?
I actually don’t know much about it but I woke up one day to tweets where they were ranking university ladies doing the most for the society. I was among them and I didn’t take it for granted
What did you learn from the late Ms. Wangari Muta Maathai, the 2004 Nobel Peace Prize Winner, environmentalist and Human rights Activist?
Stand and fight for what is right ! Demand for action, fight for your rights and above all be an agent of Peace !
On one of your recent tweets “I’m not against Billboards, I’m against the cutting of trees for visibility of billboards.” Tell us why you felt hurt?
There were photos online at that time of how trees had been cut in different roads just because they wanted to erect billboards! If we put benefits of a tree and that of a billboard to humans on a weighing machine, then the tree will win. Some looked at it as one but one plus one times a lot is equal to a lot of trees! We are losing our trees to billboards .
So, what would it take to make Environmentalism in Kenya fun?
Activities that excite the young people such as hikes, camping etc ! Also avoiding the tough language of conferences when doing civic education! We also have road trips in our team as we distribute seed balls
What’s your future take on renewable energy in Kenya?
I’m hopeful especially with the solar panel picking.At least there are efforts from some individuals and companies trying to move in that direction. This cannot be solved by business as usual
Big up a few who’ve been an inspiration on your journey
The late Prof Wangari Maathai
The “Unheard and Untold” doing the most in conservation
All the people passionate about Environment conservation from all fields.
Your parting shot
Why are we listening to science when its Covid and ignoring it when its Climate and biodiversity crisis? We can self isolate for Covid but for Climate crisis we cannot. Think about it
Your social media handles
Anita Soina on both LinkedIn and fb