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A lot has been told about the Maasai... by outsiders. For the first time, Maasai are writing their own stories.
Due to the pressure of the modern world, their oral knowledge and their cultural values are disappearing very fast. That's why they decided to record them in order to preserve them before they vanish. They have chosen plants as a means to recount their story. Indeed botanical knowledge underlies many aspects of their cultural heritage.
" Oreteti " transcribes the oral Maasai tradition through the use, the value and the meaning of wild plants in the every day life of the Maasai people.
This functional catalogue is meant to provide a truer perspective and insight into the Maasai world, but most of all to preserve this extraordinary legacy for present and future Maasai generations.
It offers an opening for Maasai students to do further research on the rich knowledge of their people and stresses on the necessity to protect the natural resources of Maasailand.
This document is also an appeal to all indigenous peoples to start documenting and recording their valuable traditional knowledge so that it can be safeguarded for generations to come and shared with tne world.
Kenny Matampash ole Meritey
Initiator of the project. Executive director of the NGO Neighbours Initiative Alliance in Kajiado (Kenya). Has successfully completed all stages of the Maasai initiation. Studied Democracy and Governance in Europe and North America. Regularly contributes to the UN workgroup on indigenous people and pastoral ecology. Received two honorary awards : HSC from the President of Kenya and an Honorary Doctorate from Cape Town University (South Africa).
Researcher, writer and general coordinator of the project. Has worked as a journalist at radio Nederland (Africa department). Co-organized meetings of representatives of native people and scientists for a foundation in Paris. She is also a graduated phytotherapist and, as a writer, she published novels, children books and essays.
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