Blessings from Ancient Africa
On 9 July, 2011, another thematic special explanation activity initiated by volunteer docents commenced on time. Different from previous ones, this time the program features two heroines – a mother and her daughter, both of whom are BMNH volunteers. Mrs. Qin Fang and her daughter have seen with their own eyes the lively African prairie and the undisturbed life of wild animals there. Impressed, they want to transmit their feelings and sense of responsibility towards the animals to more people.
While the melody of ‘The Lion King’ planted the scenery of the mysterious African wild in the audience’s senses, the volunteer mother and daughter playacted the tender story between a lioness and her cub. Ever curious and inquisitive, the cub sought explanations to questions about their environment from her mother. From their dialog, the audience learned about the lion family, the unique relationship among family members, the neighbors of lions, their friends and enemies and gained an overview of the ecosystem in African prairie without any conscious effort.
While playing “Hakuna matata… Hakuna matata” from an ancient African folklore, the docents danced an exotic dance to it and all visitors became enthusiastically involved. “Hakuna matata” means a carefree life in Swahili and expressed exactly what the mother and daughter docents wanted to deliver to the audience. Since the Earth is home to both humans and animals, humans shall not deprive animals of their right to live a happy life and humans must abandon the sickles and hunting guns, keep away from the animals’ habitats and let the animals really enjoy their own life.
After the lions’ stories were told, it’s DIY time for children to make ‘paper lions’. The discarded pieces of newspaper became highly valued material among children. With the help of volunteers, the body parts of lions were cut out and stuck together, the bristle added, the eyes illustrated and finally one and another magnificent lions came into being. At this moment, ‘lions’ brought happiness to the children and we hope in the future when those children grow up they in return will be able to bring a happy life to the neighboring animals and make the blessings from ancient Africa a reality. We surely hope that the day will come when animals and humans live happily together.