“Daan Corona” (“beat Corona” in Wolof, the lingua franca of Senegal) is the title of a video that was released on April 13, involving 20 musicians from Senegal united in the fight against Covid-19. The video, which has been viewed more than half a million times on YouTube, emphasizes the importance of individual responsibility and the need to join forces to reach a common goal using a simple, direct and captivating language.
The commitment of these Senegalese artists to the fight against Covid-19 has found a very fitting means of expression in music. But it isn’t the only one.
Many street artists are using their graffiti as communication media, creating very effective visual signs, illustrating the behaviour to avoid and the good practices to adopt in everyday life in order to limit the spread of the virus. What they have done to raise awareness is very important, because it is accessible to everyone, spreading also to the outskirts of large cities and reaching those that don’t read information brochures, like the elderly, illiterate people or children.
Among the artists at the forefront of information and prevention are also the creators of “Luttons contre l’indiscipline au Sénégal”, a Facebook page with more than 150,000 followers, which for years has been fighting to spread civic and road safety education and a greater awareness of collective behaviour. In recent weeks the page has also been providing daily updates on Senegal’s health data and spreads initiatives linked to the Covid-19 fight, such as masks distribution, the supporting of vulnerable people and the promotion of communication campaigns.
All these activities have a common thread: the idea that art really can improve society. And that joining forces is key to beating an insidious enemy like the coronavirus.