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Afro-roots musician Rocky Dawuni to detail youth, tree projects at GLF New York

By September 18, 2019Articles
  • U.N. Goodwill Ambassador for Environment to lead major tree-planting in Accra
  • Youth cultural incubator to be built in complex near Aburi, Ghana 
  • Members of the press must apply to attend GLF by Sept. 23 due to on-site security

NEW YORK (Sept. 16, 2019) – Ghanaian-born Afro-roots musician and humanitarian activist Rocky Dawuni is set to rock the Global Landscapes Forum (GLF) in New York on Sept. 28. His acoustic performance will wrap up activities at GLF, which conclude a week of action at the United Nations highlighting the urgent need to act on climate change.

Dawuni will select from his album entitled Beats of Zionwhich was released earlier in 2019 with a video filmed in Jamestown in Ghana’s capital Accra.

He will also announce two new humanitarian initiatives. The first is a landscape restoration project to plant 100,000 trees in Accra in collaboration with the city’s mayor Mohammed Adjei Sowah.
“It’s vital that we restore this urban landscape,” said Dawuni, who uses music to highlight crucial issues facing humanity. “Mass tree planting in cities can help shore up global efforts by mayors to offset the impact of climate change.”

Like many urban centers around the world, Accra, with a population of 2.3 million people, faces environmental and economic challenges related to an increasing influx of people from rural areas seeking opportunities. Worldwide, 55 percent of people live in cities, and by 2050, the United Nations projects that number will grow to 68 percent.

He will also announce a cultural project initiated through his foundation. Dawuni, a U.N. Goodwill Ambassador for the Environment for Africa and a U.N. Foundation Ambassador for the Clean Cooking Alliance, is overseeing the development of a series of cultural” incubators” for youth to develop their musical and artistic talents. The incubators will also allow for community outreach and educational opportunities.

The first center will be housed in the rambling studio complex originally created by singer Rita Marley in honor of her late husband, reggae musician Bob Marley (1945-1981) near the city of Aburi, about 35 kilometers north of Accra. It is currently under architectural restoration.

“Many West African youth, despite their great potential, lack opportunities,” Dawuni said. “Our vision is to develop a new generation of leaders who are committed to improving their own communities through skills-based training, personal initiative and collective action.”

In 2018, Dawuni, who is based in Los Angeles and Ghana, performed an outdoor concert at GLF Nairobi. He was nominated for a 2015 Grammy Award for Best Reggae Album, Branches of the Same Tree.

GLF New York will be attended by 700 climate, Indigenous and youth leaders, environmental activists and musicians who will demarcate vital restoration strategies in preparation for the launch of the U.N. Decade on Ecosystem Restoration (2021-2030).

The decade will provide a framework for landscape conservation and restoration, a process critical for curbing global warming and meeting U.N. climate targets aimed at preventing post-industrial average temperatures from rising to 1.5 degrees Celsius or higher.

Learn more:

• Climate leaders to map out U.N. Decade on Ecosystem Restoration at GLF New York

• Indigenous teen activist Autumn Peltier to advocate for water rights at GLF New York

• Street artists paint massive mural in lead up to U.N. Climate Week

• Plant-for-the-Planet to launch app at Global Landscapes Forum in New York

• Timeline: Road to U.N. Decade on Ecosystem Restoration (2021-2030) 
Rocky Dawuni “Beats of Zion” Listening & Sales Link for all platforms:
“Beats of Zion” video


Julie Mollins
Global Landscapes Forum

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