Tanama’s Story of Tree Planting in Haiti

The supershero Tanama, created by Haitian comic book artist Thony Loui, stars in an Instagram video posted today by Timberland (click image below for a YouTube version) to highlight their partnership with the Smallholder Farmers Alliance. “Our planet needs more trees to combat climate change,” says Tanama in the video, “and we need to grow more food to feed a growing world population. Here in Haiti we’ve come up with a way to do both at the same time and it all starts with smallholder farmers.”
Click on the image above to play a YouTube version of the video.
This outstanding short video was produced in Hispaniola — Thony Loui was the creative director and drew the images in his studio in Haiti; the video was shot and edited by Haiti-based filmmaker Thomas Norielle; and, the images were turned into animation by motion graphic specialist Carlos Juan Mateo in the Dominican Republic.
When Tanama was launched in March of this year, her focus was on tree planting, supporting smallholder farmers and promoting gender equality. But within weeks the Caris Foundation invited her to help with Covid-19 awareness and prevention, which placed her on billboards, murals, posters, brochures and a significant presence on social media. Thanks as well to the Raising Haiti Foundation and the Julian Grace Foundation for their support of these efforts.
With her public profile dramatically increased, Tanama has been receiving invitations from as far afield as Europe and Africa. Here are three of her recent guest appearances:
Sipè Ewo yo ye – A Song and Music Video to 
Honor Medical Professionals
‘Doctors and Nurses are heroes amongst us, let’s protect them so they can protect us’. This campaign was launched by Rapino Foundation, based in Kenscoff, with collaboration from the Haiti Response Coalition and featuring Haitian artists BIC and Strong G as well as comedian Kako. Tanama is the inspiration for the project and the thread of the video, as she inspires a young boy, who dreams of being a superhero, to see the doctors and nurses who care for his sick grandmother as heroes and role models. The song, intended to battle stigma against doctors and nurses in the time of Covid-19 and bolster morale for the healthcare profession in Haiti, was amplified through local radio and the music video has received over a half million views online and 10,000 likes and shares.
Tanama Presents Awards for Caribbean Tree Planting
October 8: The Clinton Global Initiative hosted a webinar about the Caribbean Tree Planting Project, which is coordinated by the Caribbean Philanthropic Alliance and its partners. The online event opened with a message from Chelsea Clinton and included Tanama announcing the winners of a tree planting competition who hailed from the Bahamas, Jamaica and Haiti. Click the image above to see Tanama’s contribution, and click here to watch the entire webinar.
Future Festival 2020 Features Tanama
August 23: Tanama made her first international guest appearance as part of the Future Festival 2020 organized by #She_Builds. Tanama was invited to join a distinguished lineup for this virtual event that included author Edwidge Danticat, musician Jerry Wonda, and environmentalist and Brazilian politician Marina Silva. Her lively talk, which was sponsored by the Smallholder Farmers Alliance, is just under three minutes (click image above to view) and includes examples of the Covid-19 awareness campaign that has her image showing up across Haiti on billboards, murals, posters, along with a significant social media presence.
Hugh Locke

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