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About the Osiligi
Who are the troupe?
The Osiligi Warriors were founded by their chairman Tajeu Minnisa (Richard) in 2007. The purpose of the troupe is to benefit their community and the families in their village of Kisamis, situated approximately 30 miles southwest of Nairobi. Money is raised by a series of UK tours during which the troupe will perform their tribal song and dance and spread the word about their culture.
Where were the previous tours?
To date, the troupe have toured every year since 2007. Performances have been in schools, theatres and churches. Their first tour was based in Edinburgh and was so successful, they returned to Scotland then moved down to Devon and Cornwall where they were equally well-received. Amongst many prestigious engagements, they performed at the second Commonwealth Sports Development Conference attended by representatives from all over the Commonwealth and the Scottish First Minister together with members of the Scottish Parliament. They were also invited to perform at the Eden Project in Cornwall and the Dartmoor Zoological Park. Last year they returned to the West Country, enjoying their longest and most successful tour. Each tour invokes great media attention. The following links are from their recent tours:
- BBC Cornwall
- Bude School
- Blog following the Dartmoor zoo show
As a direct result of the tours, it has been possible to find sponsors for the children of their community who previously could not afford to attend school. For more information on the charity projects click here
In introducing the members of the troupe, it is important to stress that each and every one of them is humble, affectionate and kind. Indeed those of us involved in this tour love them all and feel privileged to be helping them. Without doubt they will leave a lasting impression on all who meet them.
|TAJEU OLE MINISA (known as Richard)
Richard is the leader of the group. Born one of nine children, his father died when he was fourteen. His mother sold water and firewood in an effort to pay his school fees. In the end he had to leave school and after training as a warrior for one year, he went to help his mother drive out their cows to look for pastures. He supplemented any money they had by working as a night watchman. Realising that he was a good solo singer, he met with friends and saw the need of singing to educate their people on how to cope with poverty and hard times and to lead a more Christian life. Richard is married with three sons.
KAMAYET OLE PARMARI (known as Sarge)
Sarge never went to school. His father believed, as did many of his peers, that a child should only be sent to school if you did not like him or he was useless! Sarge is the only son in his family of four and was therefore sent to look after the livestock. Now married, with one child, a boy, Sarge has realised that his parents did not, until now, see the need for education. Sarge will ensure that all his children go to school. Since joining the Osiligi group, as a soloist, Sarge has seen many improvements in the lives of his fellow troupe members as a result of their activities.
KESAME OLE PARSAPAET (known as Movie Star)
Kesame did not go to school. His father was born blind, and now has three wives and eighteen children. After serving as a warrior for five years, proving himself an outstanding hunter of wild cats, he also enjoyed singing and jumping with his friends, as well as eating meat, drinking cows’ blood and taking wild herbs! On leaving warrior hood he found that the drought had almost wiped out the family’s cows and he only earned money by looking after the cows of a rich man whose cattle had not been affected. He then joined up with Osiligi, a group whose efforts, not only improve the lot of the village, but also campaign for good practices in their community. Kesame is married with three daughters.
LYDIA SIMALOI (known as Lydia)
Lydia is married with one son Peter and completed her first tour with the troupe in 2009. She and her husband lost all their animals in the recent drought, leaving them penniless. Her earning from the tour have made a huge difference to their living standards. Formally living in a single room mud hut, they have now been able to build a more weatherproof building with more rooms. Lydia has a fine voice and is a valued member of the troupe.
|MIRIAM TENTERE MULUNKEI (known as Miriam)
Miriam is the fourth child in a family of eight, born to her mother. Her father is a polygamist and has six wives and forty-two children. He was a very wealthy and respected man, but when the drought hit their land he lost much of his livestock, and could not maintain his large family. Miriam had to leave school. However, her father did allow her to marry the man of her choice and she and her husband have two boys who both go to school. Life is not easy, but Miriam and her husband have constructed a tin house that is resistant to rains and strong winds. Living conditions are very congested as they share the house with her mother-in-law and her five children. She hopes that her work with Osiligi will provide her with the funds to build a bigger house. She also knows that the efforts of the Osiligi troupe are doing much good work in providing education for girls.
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