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Living Museums in Namibia

A Living Museum is an authentic way of presenting traditional culture and has three main aims:

1

Fight against poverty in Namibia

By developing a Living Museum local communities can create a sustainable source of income

2

Preservation of traditional culture

With the work in Living Museums people in communal areas are encouraged to deal with their traditional culture to protect or regain important parts of their cultural identity.

3

Creation of a cultural and intercultural exchange

Visitors of the Living Museums can learn a lot about the interesting cultures of Namibian language groups and have a great opportunity to get to know the people of Namibia.

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Mafwe Museum sign erection and project meeting

Mafwe Museum sign erection and project meeting

In August 2022 we paid a visit to the Mafwe at the Living Museum in the northern part of Namibia to, among other things, install a new road sign.

The erection of the sign had become necessary because the Mafwe had moved two years ago and some of the tour operators, who until then had only known the old place, were going to nowhere out of habit. The sign erected two years ago at the crossroads 3km south of the museum was too easy to miss. Therefore it was necessary to put up a bigger sign.

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Project report by Dr. Ralf Kühn

Project report by Dr. Ralf Kühn

Read a project report from the LCFN project tour 2020 by Ralf Kühn and Sebastian Dürrschmidt with the visit of four projects.

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Project completed – Aid supply for the Living Museums

Project completed – Aid supply for the Living Museums

We made it! In these testing times we have finally managed to deliver all aid supplies of our 6000€ fund raiser to the Living Museums.

Goal was to supply all Living Museums supported by us with basic food products to the value of 1000€ per museum to help the actors and their families to make it through this tourist and income free time.

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Food deliveries to Mbunza and Mafwe

Food deliveries to Mbunza and Mafwe

The first two Living Museums have received the long awaited emergency food supplies.

After a couple of problems with suppliers in Windhoek resulting in some delays in the delivery of goods we were able to transport the supplies to the Mbunza and Mafwe. The joy was huge in both Living Museums

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Donation of blankets and update: Emergency aid for Living Museums

Donation of blankets and update: Emergency aid for Living Museums 220 blankets for 220 museum actors

Based on the Corona situation in Namibia we sent out a donation call for a Corona emergency package on Betterplace at the end of May. Currently we managed to collect donations of 4000 Euros, 2000 E are still missing so that every museum can receive food supplies of 1000 E. Here you can continue supporting us:

Corona emergency support on Betterplace

We also received numerous donations directly onto our foundation account. We are very thankful and impressed by the willingness to support us during these difficult times.

Great donation - 220 blankets for 220 museum actors

Through our call for support Alexandra Sacharow from Red Earth Safaris learned about our emergency project. Her German clients Jürgen and Brigitte of the German company Siebdruck Uth donated 220 blankets for 220 actors in the Living Museums to a total value of N$ 13.200. We also want to extend our hearty thanks to that!

We received the thick wool blankets just now - fittingly on one of the coldest winter mornings of the passed years here in Windhoek. Together with the food donations the blankets will be distributed to the Living Museums in the next few days - we will keep you informed!

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Corona situation in the Living Museums in Namibia: Call for donations - Every help counts

Corona situation in the Living Museums in Namibia: Call for donations - Every help counts

Like everywhere else in the World the Corona virus has led to a collapse of the tourism industry in Namibia. The safety measures in Namibia began with the halt of international air traffic on March 15 and with the restriction of local travel and school curriculum on March 27 (Namibian Lockdown)

For the six living museums we support this means a total loss of all income since mid-March 2020. Neither international tourists (about 90% of museum visitors) nor local travelers or school classes were able to visit the living museums and the future is uncertain, as it is currently still unclear when international travel will be possible again. Local tours have been allowed again, but the Namibian economy is so weakened that hardly anybody is travelling.

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New Signboards for the Mbunza and Mafwe Museum

New Signboards for the Mbunza and Mafwe Museum

As marketing and consulting organisation the Living Culture Foundation Namibia is also responsable for the proper signposting of the six museums it is supporting in Namibia. The relentless heat of the sun especially up north fades and burns away the colours of the signboard to the extend that we have to replace them every 2 – 3 years.

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Mafwe Museum at new location

Mafwe Museum at new location

The Living Museum of the Mafwe has moved. In mid-February 2019, we were able to carry out the long-awaited relocation of the Living Museum of the Mafwe.

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Living Museums in Numbers

In-Numbers

The tourism in Namibia is at a peak in 2017 and 2018 and the Living Museums are visited by quite a number of people in the last two years. Here are our statistics for the last year 2017.

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Voices from the Living Museums

Voices from the Living Museums

On the occasion of our 10th anniversary we asked the managers of the Living Museums to give a short statement on how they see the work in their Living Museum. Here are the answers:

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Call for donations

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The museums supported by us owe their existence to the income they make from tourism in Namibia. A lot of visitors to Namibia enjoy visiting the museums for an extended time and decide to camp directly at the Living Museums.

This of course increases the income for museums that have a campsite. Not only does the campsite itself generate income, but guests are taking part in numerous programs offered as they have more time at hand. Those who have camped at one of the Living Museums of the San know what an up-close and personal experience it is and how much this contributes to an eventful visit at the museums. 

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