Storytelling to Help
Kenyan Girls Stay
in School


Girls in underserved communities in Kenya drop out of high school at an alarmingly high rate and the lack of access to affordable sanitary pads is a primary cause. ZanaAfrica was bringing a groundbreaking new product to market and needed a look and feel that would appeal to its trendy young audience while communicating serious health information.

One of the best ways to reach young Kenyans is through comics. This medium is particularly effective because it can deliver a message with accessible characters and compelling stories, and it has a long shelf life – the average comic book is read over twenty times. We designed an aspirational character based on qualitative and focus group research that was relatable and distinctly Kenyan.

We named the product “Safi” which means “clean” in Swahili. Safi became the name of our protagonist as well as the voice of the brand. With her friends and family, Safi lives a typical young girl’s life and imparts her wisdom. We developed the concept, created the package prototype and the first instructional insert.

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