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Report of the Meeting of the African Proverbs Working Group, Nairobi, Kenya, 9 January 2010
Mazzoldi House, Nairobi, Kenya



The meeting began with a prayer by John Siyumbu. Members introduced themselves. 12 people were present. Four people sent regrets.
  1. Calvin Katabarwa from DRC gave a short report on his collection of Hema Proverbs. A discussion of the selected proverbs led to a single proverb being chosen as the “African Proverb of the Month” later in 2010. It was pointed out that there are two categories of African Proverbs Collections:
    1. Endangered.
    2. Functional/Special/Focused/Specific Themes. Examples: African proverbs on the media (Joseph Kariuki’s research), environment, trees, etc.
  2. Stan Nussbaum led a discussion on the history of the African Proverbs Project. It was pointed out that our history and the development of the African Proverbs, Sayings and Stories Website have followed the spirit of the Spanish proverb: We create the path by walking.
  3. Stan Nussbaum showcased a book on sayings on American culture.
  4. Don Sybertz gave a short talk on the Sukuma proverb Ntondo Ikatondolaga (Tomorrow makes things clear that aren’t clear today).
  5. Members commented on the 2010 Calendar:
    • The approach by theme was applauded.
    • The numbers indicating the date were too small compared to last year. It was suggested that Nicholas Adongo, the webmaster, enlarge the font size.
    • The French and Kiga translations of the January 2010 proverb were discussed. It was resolved that all possible mistakes be sent by e-mail to the moderator.
  6. New books were displayed on the table.
  7. Promoting the African Proverbs, Sayings and Stories Facebook Page. Members were sensitized on the value of social networking.
  8. Allan introduced the discussion on finances. Issues presented included:
    • provision of meals,
    • fares to the meeting place.
    • motivation such as financial incentives when a proverb is posted

    • A number of suggestions were presented:

    • That members make a contribution.
    • That a proposal be made to outsource for money.
    • After a thorough discussion, it was resolved that members will make contributions. Dr. Sim Kilosho of Kenyatta University volunteered to be in charge of the collection.
The host, Thomas Komakech, thanked everyone for coming to the meeting. Don Sybertz thanked him for the hospitality. There being no other business, it was resolved that the next meeting will be held at Maryknoll, Nairobi in three months.

Minutes by: John Siyumbu
 

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