December Issue 2014

Page 61

How can you get involved? Ama Abebrese, founder and leader of Africa’s largest anti -skin bleaching campaign shares how you can make a difference. AfroElle: Tell us more about your anti-skin bleaching campaign and how it ties into the film Skinned. Ama: Our campaign is entitled 'I love my natural skin tone'. Say No to skin bleaching/toning. What makes this campaign difficult is often the denial that exists with those who engage in the practice so awareness and education is a key component. It began in Ghana and we hope to spread across the continent and the diaspora. Skin bleaching has become a norm in many African and diaspora societies and often has very dangerous effects. Our campaign targets mostly young people

through schools and universities, radio and TV, billboards and online via social media. We have celebrity ambassadors that also push the message of loving our black skin, in all its different shades from dark to light and we have a campaign anthem song 'BeYoutiful' by music artist Sedem. Skinned couldn't have come at a better time as this skin bleaching seems to be on the rise along with the need for a dialogue about it. People can get involved in so many ways. We want to encourage parents, teachers, community leaders, and the like to encourage the youth in areas of self-acceptance. The more we talk and highlight this issue the more impact we can make in a change of attitudes. We encourage all to join our Facebook page at