The Trust’s purpose is to help us hear and learn from this unique survival from a vanished world. They want to help us care for the world.
Tairona Heritage Trust
Letter From The Founder, Alan Ereira
I have been involved with the Kogi for nearly 30 years. I was drawn to them because I admired, and still admire, an indigenous voice that says “You need our help”. Not “We indigenous people need your help” but “You need our help.” Their advice, on one level, is very simple. We are injuring the planet, and endangering all forms of life on earth, in the seas and in the air. To stop, we need to use less. Plunder less. Over the last 30 years we have come to realise the danger of burning fossil fuels and of turning oil below the earth into plastic that smothers it. But every small step forward seems to be countered by a bigger step in the wrong direction.
We can do more as individuals. But we are also members of large communities – communities of political support and action, communities of investors and of employees, communities where we live and where we work and where our voices are heard and our actions have effects. So this is a call for action. To keep your footprint soft and your voice loud. That is all you can do, and it is enough.
Of course we are all entitled to ask – “How can the Kogi help us? Do they really know anything that we don’t? Is there really such a thing, scientifically speaking, as indigenous knowledge about nature that we need to learn?” That is a fundamental question, and it needs to be seriously addressed. The Kogi think so too, and they want to demonstrate that they have knowledge that can and should be validated.
They say they are not mystics but scientists. So we are working together, the Kogi Mamas, the NGO I set up called the Tairona Heritage Trust and a French NGO called Tchendukua, working together on an environmental assessment. It will be carried out in France in September, by Kogi Mamas and Western scientists, and we will see what Western science makes of Kogi knowledge.
Right now we are raising funds for this. It is supported by the French Ministry of the Environment, and by the University of Wales, Trinity St David, which has very kindly made me a Professor. We are now raising additional finance – we need another €25,000. The integration of indigenous and Western environmental science should be a serious move towards protecting the earth. So if you can help, please click here and make it happen. Play your part in the next stage of curing the world!