This page was born as an extension of my Indiegogo Campaign which can be found over here.
I will post weekly updates on this page. The updates will be mainly course-related and during the international internship month, I will update as regularly as possible and may create a page specifically for documenting that experience. I’m remaining flexible on this one.
International Internship – As part of our program we have the opportunity to go to an organisation anywhere around the world to intern for a month. After much stress and looking at many different options, I have decided to head to Bolivia to help a past participant/Yippie on the program.
(We call each other Yippies, so I suspect you will be seeing that word scattered around this blog!)
She works with an organisation called Kawsay, there is more information about the organisation below. I am so excited about my decision to go to this part of the world. I also think that given South Africa’s history it is going to be very interesting for me to see what people in this part of the world are doing and how they are doing it.
Personally I am very interested in the world of indigenous people and “restoring/preserving their culture” (If there is even such a thing).
I myself often feel as though I am a “diluted version” of my culture – my mother is of the Bakwena tribe and my dad of the Barolong tribe. Both are Tswana-speaking tribes. I often feel like I don’t know enough about the two worlds and that I will have very little history to pass on to my children, my sister and I are working on documenting our rituals and the meaning of them. Also on perfecting our spoken language.
Unfortunately, we have not yet the luxury of having our detailed history noted on Wikipedia or our language available on “Google Translate”. The time is soon coming though.
Kawsay was formed in 1999 in Cochabamba, Bolivia. The name Kawsay means life in the language Quechua and the organisation is working according to the cosmic vision in which the central components are ecology, production patterns, culture and rights for the indigenous people in the Andes. This organisation is today active in La Paz, Oruro, Chuguisaca, Santa Cruz, Cochabamba and Potosí. The main goal in to strengthen the culture of various indigenous people and to make sure that these groups have the rights they are entitled to. This is done through education and further training that embrace the traditional local culture, knowledge, techniques, science and art. This work is an important part in order to create an alternative system of society in Bolivia. Kawsay runs a university for indigenous people and the learning techniques and methods that are used are all based on the traditional cosmic vision and on local research and development.
This university provides education within eco-tourism, indigenous people’s rights, cultural pedagogy and organic agricultural production