Community Ethnoheritage Project
Traditional Medicine and spiritual healing.
What is the aim of the project?
The project will explore the history of Traditional Medicine and Spiritual Healing (TM&SH) practices, knowledge and beliefs within the African Communities in the London Borough of Enfield from 1950s to present.
Who are involved in the project?
10 young people supported by experienced researchers will take the lead on researching, interviewing and recording TM&SH oral histories and exploring their contribution to the community in order to share them with the wider community.
What young people will do?
· Researching, interviewing and recording TM&SH oral histories
· Publicising the project, providing administration support, organising and attending the exhibition
· Undertake 10 oral open-ended interviews of at least 30-45 minutes
· Carry out online search and in libraries on the background information about the history, uses and practices of TM&SH in UK.
· Visit Kew Botanical Gardens to research and document of medicinal plants that are used in TM&SH. Young people will also learn about the current research being undertaken on medicinal plants by Kew Botanical Gardens. They will collect the information about medical and scientific (botanical) characteristics and uses of the plants as raw material used by African communities in TM&SH.
· Participating in two day training in oral history techniques, archive management and exhibition development. Training will be provided by an expert from the Oral History Society.
How young people would benefit from the project:
· Young people will gain skills in oral history research (e.g. interviews and in using research equipment)
· Increased academic and employability skills
· Gain transferrable to a range of employment occupations (e.g. problem-solving, analysis and interpretation of data, IT, interview techniques, and social and communication skills).
· Be aware of the research carried out by Kew Botanical Gardens in relation to traditional medicine and medicinal plants
· Young people get a certificate for their voluntary work
How young people volunteers will be supported?
· Support, guidance and training will be provide to young people by experts about how to carry out the research, analysis, conducting interviews, summarising and transcription of interviews
· Volunteer expenses will be provided including reimbursement of transport fees and lunch.
Where the research will take place?
The project takes place in London Borough of Enfield. The interviews will take place in homes, community centre, Libraries or other places preferred by interviewees.
What the training will cover?
· Oral history research planning and preparation, oral history interviewing techniques
· Archive organisation, archive digitisation, exhibition development and planning skills,
· Review of the role and work of local and national heritage organisations, the social meaning and value of local history and heritage,
· Learning how to conduct and preserve an oral history project, etc.
What the project will the project archive?
· An online (blog) and CD of archive information (transcripts) and an exhibition.
· Interview transcripts a will be recorded on CD and displayed on exhibition panels together with pictures showing the associated plants used in TM&SH
· Archival research (online and in libraries) to collect background information about the history, uses and practices of traditional medicine and spiritual healing in the UK.
· A project blog will be created to record and provide information on the project outcomes.
For more information, please contact:
Diversity Living Services
57 The Market Square
Edmonton Green, London
Note: This project is supported by Heritage Lottery Fund.