Welcome to ‘Tiriji (a place of abundance; a place of remembering)’ an ‘edible’ eco-cultural retreat and peace conference center situated in Meru, Kenya. This space offers a peaceful retreat, training and conference center for people interested in a cultural and eco-adventure of a lifetime and peace training. Our first purpose is for a wholesome people-to-people encounter between our communities and guests. Our second concern is to develop and put in place regenerative energies, appropriate technologies and sustainable agriculture for a healthy relationship with Mother Earth. Third, we want to create a peace academy space where people come to learn and share effective ways to build non-violent lives and resilient communities.
We believe in UBUNTU: that one is a fully human in community – that means, ‘I Am Because You Are’ and together we can transform those societal taken for granted practices that do not enhance human life and the environment. Our eco space brings people together so that we build on our mutual humanity. We thus take care of the land, conserve our environment, enjoy our wildlife and empower people through our peace work at Tiriji.
Our goal is to model a high quality, low impact lifestyle; build community as well as integrate marginalized groups in order to tap into the wealth of our diversity; engage in sustainable projects that inspire children, youth, women and men to contribute to sustainable peace and development in our communities; and empower people to discover, reclaim and trust in their capacity to change as individuals, families, communities and nations.
Tiriji: Sustainable Solutions for Climate Change – A Remembering
Tiriji is a retreat and peace training center that was created as a space to remind the Meru people of their so called old ways that have been forgotten, yet were very Earth and people enhancing. These skills are needed today to kick back the impact of climate change that is affecting our world and our livelihood today. They are also critical for rebuilding the broken people-to-people relationships across cultures.
We want to bring forth and embody an Earth-respecting culture of “restore, respect, replenish” instead of the current one of “domination, depletion, and destruction” of nature. We want to join hands with people of the world who work to enhance a future of promise, not of peril; for our children and future generations.
We are building a space that reminds us how to live on what we need and minimize consumption within our families and communities. We want to embrace a high quality-low foot print lifestyle. We want to spearhead a ‘remembering’ of how we used to live before – in harmony with each other and with the Earth – a path leading to climate justice and a safe & clean energy future.
In an age when the human connection with nature is increasingly threatened by ignorance, greed, and short-sighted goals, sacred places such as Tiriji remind us that our survival as a species depends upon our preserving the eco-systems of all living beings. In the same way, our spiritual lives only have meaning when we honor the physical matrix – our bodies and the ‘body of the earth’ – that gives us life. Sacred spaces in African culture were the places that kept alive the link between human beings, nature and the ‘living dead’. In these spaces, we are reminded of our intricate connection with the ‘divine essence’ and that our thoughts and intentions have an effect on the external landscape.
The whole environment thus serves as a mirror, reflecting back to us the qualities of our minds. To BE in sacred spaces/places can have a profoundly transformative effect, but even just to know that such places as Tiriji exist can refresh our vision of what it means to be alive and embodied on this earth. We are thus creating a space where we are reminded that our relationship with both the outer and inner worlds should be one of regeneration, reverence and appreciation. We envision a community that has the wisdom to design and determine its own destiny to a thriving future.
We endeavor to use locally available materials and resources for our eco cottages in order to build environmentally friendly living spaces. More importantly, we have chosen to utilize this space as an ‘edible garden’ where we have edible plants growing around our eco-cottages to provide organic food for our children and guests. We wish to inspire a culture of perma-cultural farm practices for food sustainability in our communities.
Tiriji is a project of International Peace Initiatives (IPI:www.ipeacei.org), with the aim to create sustainability for the Kithoka Amani Children’s Community Home (KACH), a home that supports children affected/infected or made vulnerable by HIV/AIDS and/or poverty. We engage and partner with community members to imagine a sustainable world where there is enough for everyone’s needs now and for generations to come.
We are still building the space. So, if you feel inspired to support us ‘birth’ this space for enabling sustainable development and peace in our lives, empowering children and the community, and providing a model of an ‘edible’ eco-cultural and peace building space to enhance our environment, feel free to contact Dr. Karambu Ringera at firstname.lastname@example.org or 254 713 937 227.