Most Masai families keep cattle, sheep and goats. Some have jobs in the tourist industry or in the flower farms which supply European and US markets. Many children are trained to look after the animals but have no formal education; those whose parents can afford it may go to school.
A serious threat to the economy of the Masai Mara is global warming. If the annual rains don’t come people may die of thirst, starvation or diseases caused by malnutrition. Drought can also be devastating for wild and domesticated animals.
There is a need to diversify the economy of the Mara if the Masai are to survive climatic change; people will need new understanding and new skills. Communication in English may help young Masai to gain further education and employment in new industries. New opportunities are needed for employment in sustainable tourism; building and engineering, water management; renewable energy; health and welfare; arts and the cultural industries. Education in using ICT will support teaching and learning in each of these areas.
Each One Teach One and the Savannah Cinema are designed as part of a self-help community education programme, led and directed by local people who will be happy to help UK volunteers to understand life in the Mara. Young Masai have much to teach UK students and teachers. Each-One-Teach-One aims to empower all its young participants, whether Masai or Londoners, with new knowledge and skills. This supported self-help project will benefit Masai and East London young people equally.
Each One Teach One and the Savannah Cinema have potential for longer-term sustainability as part of an ambitious programme of education and community-led economic development in the Masai Mara. Team Talek is envisaged as a Community Action Group which offers Talek young people a way to work together to improve their lives. The CAG will provide a non-government way to support community-led social and economic change which aims to benefit people in the village of Talek, Naroq County. Self-help, self determination and sustainability are central to the success of this project.