One man's fight to save his people.

Roots of the forest, currently in development, goes deep into Embobut Forest, Kenya and follows Elias Kimaiyo Kibiwot – an activist and member of the indigenous Sengwer community, as he struggles to secure justice for his people, after years of violent evictions from their home.

‘I am for the people, I breathe the people and I defend my people’ Elias Kimaiyo Kibiwot. 

The Sengwer people have lived inside Embobut Forest for as long as they know, depending on it for food and medicine. However, in the 1980’s the forest was earmarked as a conservation area, funded by the EU, and a controversial program of evictions began to clear the forest of people. The Kenyan government claim that the Sengwer have no right to the land and that they damage the area by felling trees for firewood and cultivation. The Sengwer community claim they live in harmony with their environment and put blame on the KFS for decades of mis-management and degradation of the forest, stating that they were intentionally left out of negotiations.  

The most recent evictions, in February 2018, carried out by the KFS resulted in the burning down of houses, the serious injury of two Sengwer men and the death of another.

Reelmedia Film is a creative film and multimedia production studio that places people at the centre of stories, to inspire change and motivate audiences to action. We work with organisations across the development and humanitarian sectors and our films explore issues and tell stories from around the world.

Our passion to create compelling films and multimedia that affect change and communicate the initiatives, campaigns and programming of development and humanitarian organisations, has taken us around the world, often in challenging contexts.

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