We are CinemAfrika! Welcome to our website. Do you have any questions after reading or do you want to participate? Gladly! Contact us. You will find our contact details on the last page.
CinemAfrika stands for collaboration between makers from Europe and Africa. Not just any Film and TV-makers, photographers or writers. Our African partners are always ambitious young people from the so called “slums” All of them have a heart for film and other media.
Many of our students / colleagues did not even have the chance to complete primary or secondary school. Yet they are unstoppable when it comes to telling stories… Their stories! The stories of poverty, injustice, and abuse. But also, the stories of fantasy, art, community, resilience and full of African humor.
The story of these people must be told! CinemAfrika wants to support them with workshops, coaching, partnerships, co-productions and training. Growing together to get better in our profession. So that more people can hear and see the story and a proper meal could be earned. Also, for f.e. filmmakers from the privileged west’ working with African colleagues is very special and enriching! The founders of CinemAfrika have been involved in coaching makers from this continent and background since 2008. In 2020 it became high time to give this work more structure. That's how the CinemAfrika program came about.
We proudly invite you to participate in any way you see fit for you.
Our goals are:
Supporting the development of artistic and journalistic media made by people from economic disadvantaged groups in Africa in order to:
Produce more artistic and relevant productions
Work on the East-African narrative/way of storytelling (so no copy of Hollywood or Europe)
Make the voices of these groups heard and thus contribute to development of human rights and democratic processes.
- Achieve better incomes for makers from slums.
- Stimulate exchange between African and Western makers and organizations.
Living conditions in the slums are just terrible. One never gets used to that and shouldn't!
People are no rats and shouldn't have to live like that. But many are now. Despite this, the major media outlets in Africa, often controlled by governments, hardly give attention to people in the slums.
Most people from the economic middle and upper classes are also not interested in their poverty-stricken countrymen. In fact, they are looked down upon and by many.
Fortunately, many people from these 'slums' are resilient and creative. CinemAfrika
wants to support them in 'telling and putting out' their story.
This is no 'emergency relief' but development support in a particularly powerful form
Due to the scarcity of resources and inadequate education in the slums, the quality of many media productions stays, from a European perspective, behind. As a result, the produced films are often not bought or viewed often enough. Therefore, it is hard for a maker to make an impact and earn a decent income. In recent years, the initiators of CinemAfrika have built a wide network of organizations and makers.
We have taught classes and given workshops, coached productions and, together with some of participants, made co-productions that were sold and screened on Dutch and Taiwanese TV. Also, due to our contacts we want to play a role in distribution internationally of the African productions. It is obvious that quality is key in this process.
Two productions with local makers:
Earlier productions from people coming from the slum we supported have been
screened at Netherlands, Belgian, German and Taiwanese TV and at festivals around
Two productions, amongst others, which were made in cooperation local makers are:
Kippen voor Kimaru, About 10-year-old Kimaru does not resign to the fact that there is no money for
Dusty Bin Dreams, mid-length documentary (56 min). About 5 people who live and work on a garbage dump in Nairobi and dream about their future.
We cooperated in the organization of the Nairobi Slum Film Festival and were a jury member of the Mtaa Film Festival 2020 that had Gender Based Violence as its subject.
We work/worked and together with The Big 5 Center (which we helped set-up), ASMO (Alliance of Slum Media Organizations), Voices of Africa Media Foundation, Nairobi Community Media House, Slum TV, Nairobi University, South Sudan TV, Miraya Radio (Sudan and South Sudan) and many others in Mali, Swaziland, Tanzania and (a bit off the route) Bangladesh, Turkey, Bulgaria as well as the African School and NHTV University of Applied sciences in the Netherlands.
In addition to the above-mentioned documentaries, we made, in collaboration with
African filmmakers, various TV programs and internet productions involving African
makers for Dutch broadcasters.
In 2020 it became time to place all these activities under one official roof: CinemAfrika. The ANBI status also provides protection for the volunteers
and donors and a tax shelter.
Our goal has been described, our ambition for the film world in East-Afrrica is:
There was a time before CinemAfrika and a time after!
You want to help? Visit "Participation" on this site and register as a volunteer and/or donate.
CinemAfrika is an independent program within the e-Progress foundation. Along
with 3 others programs that also work in East Africa, we cary the costs of
organization and administration.
Each program has its own leading group and delegates 1 or 2 members to the board
We inspire and advise each other within the board and various other
associations. When we get in Africa, we visit each other's projects. That way we keep
work together and keep the finger on the heartbeat of the projects.
CinemAfrika generally does not initiate projects in Africa but answers to questions
from African organizations and makers. Only then we seek how we can deliver
The founders of CinemAfrika, Gerhard Rijksen, Floor Koomen and Anne van
Campenhout and the
other volunteers all have a strong bond with Africa.
Gerhard (1971) is director-publisher at De Barbaar en Gideon books. He has a special, personal , bond with Africa because one of the children of Gerhard and Loes is born there. During his visits to the continent, he was captivated by people and culture. Gerhard is our delegation to the umbrella board of e-Progress
Anne van Campenhout
Anne (1989) is a documentary filmmaker and coach. She makes films and trains media students in The Netherlands and various (African) countries. She worked as a director at Netherlands Film Festival and won several prestigious awards with her films. She also organizes discussion groups for women for whom sex is complicated. She is co-founder of the SAM foundation, that is also active in East Africa
Floor (1963) is a seasoned and award-winning documentary film maker, writer, teacher, editor-in-chief and Africa expert. He partly grew up in Africa and came back countless times since then to create and teach. About his travels he wrote the book in Dutch ‘Soms In Afrika’ (In Africa Sometimes which was published by Gerhard). He is co-founder of the SAM Program, that is also active in East Africa.
André van der Zee is financially knowledgeable and therefore the treasurer. Gert Visscher has visited Africa several times to visit projects and worked for multiple organizations for international development. internationale ontwikkelings- en noodhulp.
Foundation e-Progress - CinemAfrika
CinemAfrika falls under the Dutch government provision ANBI.
The e-Progress Foundation. offers projects in Africa a financial and legal shelter
Unique Production Wins Award!
As the end result of the training ‘telling YOUR story” cinemAfrika.nl did in Nairobi all participants (4 small groups) presented their ‘film idea’.
All were good and fun, but one plan stood out! Everybody agreed! A film idea by Karo Wambui. In the WhatsApp group, people remained enthusiastic and pulled together. One person would supply a camera, another a computer to edit on, another one music skills. A typical case of good of African Obuntu! cinemAfrika.nl followed this conversation for a week or two. And as it did not die out, we decided to offer our support. We put together a small budget and offered the trainer, Floor Koomen, coach to the project.
We took about one month to finish the short film trying beat the submission deadline of the MACHFEST (Machakos Film Festival). We did and…. ‘SUN, MEN, MOON AND WOMAN’ won the award!
Such encouragement for the students! We are so proud! A big step forward in the development for these creatives from the Slums. Please enjoy watching it here.
We are now looking for funds to re-edit it a bit, add to sound, so we could go onto an international level of distribution. Wanna help? Check this website under ‘Participation’ or ‘Help mee’.
We might have to change the name of our foundation from cinemAfrika into cineActive! Because we have been really busy and active.
As you can read under this article, we organized the first coast film MAKERS festival that actually leads us to be involved in the production of 1, 2 or three film projects!
artwork by Karolina Wambui
Then we moved from Kenya’s coast to the capital Nairobi where we conducted 2 workshops. One in Kariobangi (partnering with K-Yout and AGMA), close to the slum area’s of Dandora (see earlier doc Dusty Bin Dreams) and Korogocho. This workshop was called ‘Prepare and produce your Story’. The +/- 16 students worked in 4 groups and created a scenario. All were great and the presentation were touching and very funny. One was outstanding! When we left the class, the students could not stop talking about it on WhatsApp. Serious plans to actually make were droughted. One student offered a camera, another a editing facility, again another offered to write the music and… After a few days of following this, we decided to offer our coaching for the production now to be called; the Sun, Moon, woman and men (mixed media 7 minutes). The topic is greed and climate change in a very African setting. We aim to get it ready by November 6th 2021 and submit it to the Machakos Film Festival. If the team keeps it together, I am convinced we will be shortlisted for the prices (equipment) at least!
Of course, we will share the film here.
From Kariobangi we moved to Mathare and worked with AGMA partner SlumTv.
There we did part one of in total a 6 day workshop on the creation of mini-documentaries (1 to 7 minutes). 12 young students from the slum Mathare joined in and passionately committed got to work on matters of cinematography and storytelling. In 3 weeks’ time we will meet again for another 3 days of training and filming.
In the first week of November we will conduct a writers camp trying to work out a scenario for a project The Afrikanist where African screenwriters are challenged to come up with pure African stories and an African structure to tell them. And no, we will not change the name. Because African cinema made by grassroots African film makers is still our thing, our passion! So cinemAfrika it is and will be.
Want to join, help or get involved in any other way? Drop us a line on email!
First edition of Coast Film Makers Festival 2021
CinemAfrika has organised the first edition of the two days Coast Film Makers Festival in Mombasa. The festival was organised on the 9th and 10th of September 2021 in co-operation with AGMA and our local partner Swahilipot Hub. Together, we tried to reach local film makers, to discuss and analyse films and film-making. Expectations were met, when 40 motivated filmmakers joined to; network, socialize, analyse films, listen to lectures, and participate in Masterclasses about storytelling and cinematography by CinemAfrika’s co-founder Floor Koomen.
Covid measures limited the number of participants and therefore we had to disappoint at least the same number of attendants that registered in time. Although we missed their input; it was great to see the interest Kenyan filmmakers show for our event. We hope to meet them another time soon.
Our partners in organizing the Coast Film Makers Festival are AGMA and Swahilipot Hub. AGMA is a consortium of grassroots art and media organizations, working with children and youth to nurture talents, give tools of self-representation and create pathways to business innovation and employment in the creative sector. Swahilipot Hub is a non-profit organization based in Mombasa that focuses on inspiring and developing upcoming innovative technology and art. They aim at providing an appropriate environment for the youth to build sustainable solutions around the challenges in the community.
We at CinemAfrika would like to thank all, for their support and input. Among them; Kaladze Vidze, Stephanie Maseki, DJ Lenium, Mahmood Noor, George Karnaja, Onno Groenewegen (IT-Connect), Hugo Drost (Goveart Makelaars) and Steef Sadelmeier (IT-Recycling). With special thanks to all the Swahilipot volunteers – led by Zuhra Zuhra – that made it all happen!
Please do not hesitate to contact us for more information or if you would like to help in our mission to enhance African grassroot film.