A Quarter shines bright – Climate Partnership with Zanzibar

Zanzibar is more than a holiday destination. Around 1 million people live here. 200 thousand in the capital. Mzee Juma works for the department for Urban Development. The area is called Mnazi Mmoja. It is a very popular area and we have many social activities going on here. Many football-teams are playing here. This used to be only marshland. But thanks to a drainage system, the site is now usable during the rainy season. But that was just the beginning. We have a climate partnership with the city of Potsdam to improve the site by planting trees. And as many people are coming here frequently, we also constructed concrete benches. As you can see, people are using it. We also provided dust bins close by, in case somebody has to put something in there. We improved the sanitation of the area. Many people and clubs are getting involved in the municipal climate partnership with Potsdam. Even a match between the two famous women’s football teams recently took place: the ‘Zanzibar Soccer Queens’ encountered Germany’s national women’s football league ‘Turbine Potsdam’. When we saw the level of women’s football in Germany, me and my players would have never thought that the level of women’s football could be so high! I enjoyed meeting international women footballers. They were very tall and played better than we did. That’s why we learnt a lot. We played against them in a gigantic stadium. I’ve never been in any one of those before. The sports ground is part of the district of Kikwajuni. Most of the players of the ‘Soccer Queens’ live here. Many of the housing blocks were erected as prefabricated constructions in the 60s by the former GDR. Mzee Juma and students of the local university are working to improve life conditions in Kikwajuni together with residents. The estate is the focal point of the climate partnership. At the time, the Germans came to Zanzibar to help us regarding housing construction. That’s why we call these houses the ‘German houses’. But I think it’s time for us to help residents of our district to repair the houses. The houses do not suggest progress at first glance, but it has at least arrived on the roof. This project is an installation of solar-panels according to the partnership between Potsdam and Zanzibar. It is an international climate partnership. It’s to use only renewable energy. One project includes building streetlights. These streetlights will only run on solar-energy. Right by the main road is the Girl’s boarding School. Their way to school is now lit at all times. First there were no solar panels and many bad things happened here. For example raping. At night people can’t walk around here because it’s so dark. It’s very scary for us. We just stayed inside, because we had no other options. But now it’s made us confident to go out and we’re very happy. Now climate-neutral sunlight shines here in the night. This street is very important. It is a connection from the community to the hospital. This street has constantly been facing challenges: Women and children were walking to the hospital and some people were attacked, there was vandalism. People were very afraid to cross this street. Because of that we’re using the climate partnership to use a solar street lighting system which is funded by the NAKOPA programme. Now the road is safe and that’s very good for our society.

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