Musician Nyago unveiled as GBV and Mental Health Ambassador

Lifest has unveiled Afro-spiritual musician Lucy Gondwe, also known as Nyago, as an ambassador for gender based violence (GBV) and mental health project.

The project aims at engaging artists including comedians, musicians and poets in the fight against ills of GBV and addressing mental health issues using their talents.

Nyago was unveiled on Friday at Latitude 13 in Lilongwe during sponsors and partners cocktail ahead of Lilongwe Music Festival scheduled for 29th-30th October aimed at mobilizing funds for the project.

Nyago-singing during Lifest sponsors and partners cocktail at latitude 13–Photo by Chris Loka, Nyasa Times

Speaking during the event, Lifest project coordinator Maya Kalumo said despite that others have already talked about issues to do with mental health and GBV, they have decided to take a different approach in addressing those issues in order to make the difference.

Kalumo said they have observed that many people, especially the youth, suffer in silence and when they are depressed, they turn to suicide.

“It feels bad to see young people losing lives due to depression yet there are many people who can help them and we have decided to take a responsibility in encouraging people, specifically young people to be able to speak out when they face challenges. We are going to use music as a tool,” he said.

Nyago said she is excited that Lifest has entrusted her to be an agent of change and someone who can give awareness on issues that are affecting people of all ages both old aged and the youth.

“I am so happy to be an ambassador for this noble cause because the messages that I am carrying are personal and I believe can also be personal to someone, i have gone through hell in as far as issues of gender based violence and mental health are concerned,” she said.

“Getting out of mental health issue is not easy but it is now time for young people to normalize sharing situations they are going through and get help, as an artist, I will use my music in giving awareness on the same.”

In her remarks, the Deputy Minister of Labour and Manpower Development, Vera Kamtukule, said the involvement of musicians in addressing mental health issues will enable many people to get messages saying music speaks many languages and unifies people with different belief.

Kamtukule said Nyago is the best choice for an ambassador considering that the artist was once a victim of GBV and had won a mental health struggle.

“Choosing Nyago for Lifest ambassadorship is a perfect choice because she has the legitimacy to speak on issues of gender based violence considering that she has gone through it and came out with so many lessons. She is going to bring hope to others who would be going through the same and those who went through the same but are failing to move on.

“Being a musician, sometime, Nyago cannot sit and speak to someone but through the music she will be preaching the message, appealing and giving hope to people whom she has never met and those that she will never meet,” she said.

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