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OVERVIEW

Project G for Griot is aimed at the preservation of our African oral tradition of storytelling, and the presentation and promotion of Trinidad and Tobago’s history, culture and cultural traditions; particularly those traditions connected to our most celebrated seasons, festivals and events. Its mandate is to educate and entertain through recorded stories and downloadable activities; recordings in which the stories ride the high and low notes of T&T’s very own tenor pan and the rhythms of the djembe, shereke and various other percussion instruments.

Centered around a single character called Tan Doo Doo, a representation of a true Tobago woman, each story takes its listeners on a journey filled with lots of memories for some and familiar and not so familiar tastes, sounds, sights and experiences for others. Stories are organized into series and each series focuses on a time of much pomp, circumstance and activity on the twin islands: Christmas, Carnival, Easter, Tobago Jazz, Tobago Heritage, Independence Day, Great Fete, Blue Foods Festival and so on. Project G for Griot’s content will live on a website where visitors will be able to preview, purchase and download content.

In addition to accessing stories on Project G for Griot’s website, visitors will also be able to preview, purchase and download artwork and enrichment activities for each story. Each story has its own cover art and set of enrichment activities to engage listeners in learning more about the characters, customs, words and phrases. Project G for Griot’s enrichment activities include drawing, coloring, matching word search, trivia, and so on. The vision is that children, in particular those between the ages 4 to 12, will engage in these educational and enrichment activities while listening to the stories. This component of the initiative appeals to children’s creativity and helps them practice and improve various cognitive and non-cognitive skills.

In the future, Project G for Griot hopes to partner with schools and government agencies in order to enhance school curriculums and promote Trinidad and Tobago’s tourism and culture. G for Griot merchandise is also on the horizon: t-shirts and headscarves; kitchen utensils, towels, pots, pans, and dishes; and G for Griot stationery.

G for Griot honors educator and Tobago stalwart, Ms. Victoria L. Mitchell, affectionately known as Aunty Pat. It pays tribute to others who have taught and mentored G for Griot’s founder: Ms. Jackie Dillon, Ms. Kenetta Bobb, Ms. Annette Alfred, Ms. Lisa McSween, Ms. Glenda Roselayne, and the late Ms. Lynn Ocho. 


GRIOT

A member of a hereditary caste among the peoples of western Africa whose function is to keep an oral history of the tribe or village and to entertain with stories, poems, songs, dances, etc. Known as a West African historian, storyteller, praise singer, poet, or musician, the griot is a repository of oral tradition and is often seen as a leader due to his or her position as an advisor to royal personages.


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