14 Cows for America – An Incredible Offering Born Out of Compassion

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Wilson Kimeli Naiyomah is originally from the Maasai tribe in Kenya. But on September 11, 2001, he was in New York City when the terrorist attacks took place. Kimeli witnessed firsthand the horrendous tragedy that occurred that day. Several months later, he visited his native tribe in Kenya. While there, he told them the story of the horrible events he had seen on September 11, 2001 – in their remote tribe, they had not heard about these events!

Kimeli’s Maasai tribe was so moved by his story that they wanted to do something to show their support for America. After much consideration, they decided upon an offering that might seem unusual to Americans – 14 cows. But for the Maasai tribe, offering 14 cows was an enormous sacrifice, because to them cows are sacred and held in the highest esteem. Cows are one of the most important aspects of life in the Maasai tribe. As such, the Maasai tribe’s offering of 14 cows represented the ultimate show of love and support to the tragedy-stricken American people!

Additional Resources:

  • Here is an article that tells all about Kimeli and the offering of the Maasai tribe.
  • Here is a website about the book “14 Cows For America”, which tells the amazing story.

Topics for Discussion:

  • Why did the Maasai tribe want to give America 14 cows?
  • If you wanted to make an offering, what important thing in your life would you give?

Take Action:

  • Visit the Maasai Cultural Exchange Project website to learn more about the Maasai tribe and how you can help support them!
  • Visit the 9-11 Help America Foundation website to learn more about how you can help support people who have been affected by the tragedy on September 11, 2001.

Teacher Features:

  • Here is a link to a Critical Reading Skills worksheet that you can use for elementary school students.
  • Here is a link to a Critical Reading Skills worksheet that you can use for middle school students.

 

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