Erromangan traditional ocean knowledge recognised through partnership with the One Ocean Hub

Chief Daniel Dam Atnelo, Chairman of the Erromango Cultural Association and VKS Director Richard Shing sign a cultural archives access agreement for the Netai en Namou Toc project on 23 March 2021.

The Erromango Cultural Association has won a UK funded grant through the One Ocean Hub to draw from Erromango’s artistic and cultural heritage to produce contemporary artwork and traditional stories that celebrate the indigenous connection to the ocean.

Working closely with the Natmonuk Simanlou (Island Council of Chiefs), and the Vanuatu Cultural Centre, the Netai en Namou Toc (Stories of Mother Ocean) project will also assist to deepen traditional knowledge as it relates to the ocean, through the power of traditional story-telling.

This work will also draw from the Vanuatu Cultural Centre’s work on traditional marine resource management (in early 2000s), and support contemporary cultural and artistic adaptations through an illustrated book to ensure traditional knowledge is ‘living’.

The One Ocean Hub is a collaborative five-year international research programme funded by UK Research and Innovation, that aims to transform approaches to integrated and inclusive ocean governance in Africa and the South Pacific. The 10-month Erromango project will also participate in a global knowledge exchange across the One Ocean Hub community, with similar projects also underway in South Africa, Ghana, PNG and Solomon Islands.

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