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Indigenous initiative to keep communities and families save from COVID 19 in Kenya

 In the past months there has been an important effort to prevent communities from Covid 19 in West Pokot and Narok County.

This initiative started with the collaboration of Rodah Rotino, executive director of Pastoral Communities Empowerment Programme (PACEP), and Mauricio del Villar Zamacona and family, who are Mexican citizens and have been in Kenya since January 2020.

Since May this year they started an initiative to create awareness in 10 villages in West Pokot County and 5 villages in Narok County, on how to prevent Covid 19 with clear and simple words according to the local culture and way of life.

They distributed hundreds of pamphlets and posters with illustrations and written message in Pokot, Maasai and English languages, which reached 1,000 families.

Also, they supported the communities with 2,000 masks, buckets and soaps for use in the houses and in the public places.

In all of the villages they talked about of prevention of the pandemic and also the importance of strengthening the Pokot and Maasai Culture respectively, through the following actions:

Ø Valuing the Pokot and Maasai culture

Ø Listening and Respecting the Elders

 Ø Taking care of the cattle and planting your own food

 Ø Taking Herbal Medicine

 Ø Wearing traditional artifacts

 Ø Respecting and caring for the women

 Ø Teaching kids the cultural norms and traditions

 Ø Leaving behind retrogressive cultural practices

 Ø Respecting our natural resources

All these activities were possible thanks to the collaboration and leadership of Emanuel Klatan Kidereng (assistant chief of Sla Sublocation in West Pokot), Peter Meikasi (assistant Chief of Oloosokon Village in Narok County), Bernard Abonyo (Officer Commanding Station in Chapereria), Joseph Nkorruma (an engaged young Maasai man), the elders and different volunteers from the communities.

Finally they encourage all the tribes and indigenous communities of Kenya and world not to be afraid, it is better to be informed and take care of each other as part of the same community… The activities in West Pokot County were supported by the Urgent Action Fund Africa and the activities with the Maasai in Narok County were supported by a fundraiser in Mexico. Pastoral Communities Empowerment Programme (PACEP)

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