Supporting the Maasai

Woodland Ways and Desert Ways are both profit making companies but we pride ourselves on operating in a sustainable and environmentally friendly way and we also adopt a “leave no trace” approach on all our courses. In addition to this we are proud that on all our oversees expeditions we utilise local guides and/or drivers and make a concerted effort to put money back into the local economies.
This is particularly the case with our Maasai experience.  The Maasai are a proud people and are struggling to cling on to their noble culture despite increasing pressures from outside, such as loss of grazing rights to their traditional lands and the increasing encroachment of “modern” civilisation.  We feel that there is no better way to increase awareness of this dwindling way of life than by allowing people to experience it first hand and then to relate their experiences to others.

The village we have chosen to visit are not on the main tourist track but are still endeavouring to live their lives as traditionally as possible.  A significant proportion of the cost of the trip is actually given to the village allowing them firstly to maintain this way of life without having to resort to other sources of gaining income and also actively gives them an incentive to maintain their traditions and skills.  In addition our customers will be helping the village by building a traditional hut for the retired head man of the village and his wife.  This is at the request of the village………..instead of asking for more money.

Our guides and translators in Kenya are Maasai and have a vested interest in maintaining the Maa culture.
In addition, all food, vehicles, tents and equipment are sourced locally all helping the local economy.
On top of this our priority whilst with our hosts is that our presence does not have a detrimental impact on our hosts.  So for instance water and firewood will be brought in from sustainable sources elsewhere so as not to deplete these valuable commodities locally.  All food and other materials that are provided by our hosts are paid for so that again our trip is sustainable.

Further to this we are endeavouring to organise a tour of the UK for a Maasai dance troop.  The aim of the tour is to promote the plight of the Maasai people, earn an income for the members of the troop (all currently unemployed) and to raise money for disabled Maasai children.

Woodland/Desert ways are organising and promoting this tour as a completely non-profit making venture.

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