This video documents the first making of authentic Maasai war shields in 50 years (there is also a Maa language voiceover version here, The project sprang from within the Okiramatian community of southern Kenya, and is a global collaboration. The Maasai people of the region, through SORALO (South Rift Association of Land Owners), are building a natural and cultural heritage conservation program with funding and assistance from individuals, businesses, and non-governmental organizations in Kenya, North America, and Europe. The shield workshop featured in this video is one of several cultural preservation projects in this Maasai renaissance. By recording the knowledge of the elders, the goal is to inspire the next generations to retain and rekindle pride through cultural knowledge.

Funding for the workshop, as well as photography and videography, were provided by ConserVentures. We are also producing a book and posters to return to the community for their November 2013 Maasai Cultural Heritage Festival.

Shield-Making Workshop — The people who made it happen

Olkiramatian Community of South Rift, Kenya
Lale'enok Resource Centre

With artisans:
Tonkei ole Rimpaine
Karinte ole Manka
Ntetiyian ole Pasoi
Sipala ole Mpoe
Kelempu ole Ntetiyian
Mariketi ole Kalempo
Rijano ene Ntetiyian
Majakus ene Saitaga
Bebi ene Mugesa
Moyiangei ene Sampao

With assistance from:
John Kamanga, project manager
Albert Kuseo
Joel Njonjo
Jackson Kaiseyie
Guy Western

African Conservation Centre, Nairobi
Lucy Wariungi, director
Dr. David Western, chairman

Dr. Debbie Nightingale
Dr. Shirley Strum
Elizabeth Loker and Clinton Lucy

Flight & Safaris International, Winnie Akinyi

British Museum, Centre for Anthropology
Catherine Elliott, Jim Hamill, Christopher Spring

Cinematography by Jonathan Hanson
Photography & video production by Roseann Hanson


Maasai Traditional Warrior Chant, recorded by Mark Rebaum (via Soundscapes)

Intro to Maasailand, Maasai Song, and Seeing the Plains, by Marc Johnston & Steve Amis, from the film Through Maasailand (

Maasai Traditional and Osingirii Lenkare, by The Environmental Club and Maasai Music Project of Westlake City Schools (Ohio) in cooperation with the Cincinnati Zoo and Miami University. Written and recorded in Olkiramatian, Kenya, by Maasai and American students (

Voiceover by Graham Jackson

Vintage Maasai hunting clips 1909, Cherry Keaton, "Native Lion Hunt"

Funding provided by donors of ConserVentures Charitable Organization:
Dr. Edward Beggy
Carol Keyser
Doug Mote
Brian DeArmon
R.J. Stappel
Terry & Charlie Beggy
Steve Hayden and Diane Boyer
Clay Knight
Tom & Celeste Hanagan, Four Wheel Campers

with additional support from

For more information please visit: (South Rift Association of Land Owners) (African Conservation Centre)

Ashe o'leng. Thank you for watching.

Loading more stuff…

Hmm…it looks like things are taking a while to load. Try again?

Loading videos…