Elder’s Circle by Joseph Kirrinkol

In October 2015, elders from twelve tribes in Kenya came together with a common goal of peace. Here the elders came to share their experience on how they solve disputes in their different communities. Each community had different ways to restore peace according to the discussion. The uniqueness in these cultures is that each community had symbols of peace.

Pokomo During peace path ceremony
Pokomo During peace path ceremony

The Pokomo community, for example use canes, drums and unique attire worn to symbolize peace and reconciliation. The Maasai Community uses symbols like black straight stick carried when a person is wearing ostrich feathers to represent peace. In every community to mention but a few, all have symbols of peace. It is always the elders who mediate for peace. During these meetings, herbal medicine (alternative medicine) and different symbols that are used by each community are brought together.

Maasai Elders

In each elders meeting, we also brings along herbalist who are known by their communities to share their differences and similarities in the herbal practices. This exchange program has brought a lot of knowledge to understand and appreciate creation and the mother earth, as a source of healing. Traditional medicine varies from plants, to minerals. After every event, few herbalists are chosen to train and share their experience in treating and using herbal medicine.

Healers sharing during the elders meeting.
Healers and Elders during and elders circle in October 2015

These events of herbal medicine are called the LEARNING CIRCLE, where it is held and supported by TICAH every month, the event is meant to pass this rich knowledge to the younger generation who in extend help to spread the same knowledge to others. For the last six sessions we have learned extensively on the respiratory system, the reproductive system, the skin and the diseases associated to the skin, different kinds of allergies and chronic wounds.

This event has attracted both community and university students. The university students are mostly those undertaking different courses but more so those doing health courses. We hope to extend this program to reach out to other areas in Kenya.