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Using music as part of the Tupumue project to raise awareness of lung health

This musical case study uses a song and music video to highlight the importance of lung health in Nairobi.
Multiple Authors
Drawing of a silhouette of a person with the word Tupumue coming out of their mouth.
Pumua Fiti Ishi Fiti (Live Well, Breathe Well) feat The Tupumue Music Crew and Lung Health Champions

This case study is part of the SEI Urban Toolbox for Liveable Cities which has been developed by the SEI Initiative on City Health and Wellbeing. The Urban Toolbox is a collection of tools, developed within SEI or in coordination with SEI, aimed at supporting planning and decision-making for improving the health, well-being and resilience of city residents and urban systems more broadly.

This case study demonstrates how creative musical approaches can be used to share information.


The Tupumue project aims to generate new scientific knowledge about the early life course origins, burden, determinants, and significance of non-communicable lung disease in Kenya by studying the lung health of children and adolescents from two very different communities next to each other. Mukuru is an informal settlement between a major industrial site, major roads and a national park. Buruburu is a wealthier formal settlement next to Mukuru, with tarmac roads, water and sanitation infrastructure.

The project used several different methods to explore lung health, including spirometry measurements of lung function, child health card data, air quality measurements in homes, schools and on walking routes around the settlements, and drawings made by school children. In order to help share this information the project used creative musical approaches to engage with audiences. This video showcases the Tupumue lung health champions explaining the study to residents in the two communities, Mukuru and Buruburu, in February 2020, prior to the start of data collection.

The project ran from 2019-2023 and was led by KEMRI and LSTM.

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