Mongolia


Mongolians are very good at using what resources they have presented to them by nature and circumstance. At ger camps, there is a customary placement of the gers and the pens for the livestock in relation to the water supply. Many tools the nomads use on a daily basis are used for secondary purposes that allow for the preservation of those tools and help to reduce the environmental impact on a location. Preservation of the environment in the nomadic lands is extraordinarily important.


Resourcefulness is a key characteristic of Mongolian life, whether in the city or the rural areas of the country. Electricity is a rare luxury hardly ever seen in the nomadic lands of northern Mongolia, as it is not necessary for completing everyday tasks, but some do make use of portable and renewable energies. Nomads make use of solar panels that are placed just outside of the ger, generally on a pole that is stuck into the ground and secure enough to survive some harsher weather.


Mongolia has been presented with the opportunity to build a unique framework for themselves both politically and economically as a result of their recent change in governmental structure. Building this foundation is proving to be a very complex process as two distinct parts define the Mongolian economy: the formal and informal sectors. The formal sector includes all businesses and organizations that are registered with a licensing authority and a tax commission while businesses and organizations in the informal sector are not.


One of the things Mongolians take a great deal of pride in is the basis of their traditions in their national history. Every custom or practice has a direct connection to a story in Mongolia’s past and every Mongolian has a vast knowledge and respect for these national traditions. This knowledge and pride is present in all generations in society, children as young as age 10 have a deep-rooted respect for the origins of their practices.


Mongolia is a country that is landlocked between two super giants in the global community: China and Russia. While Mongolia has a rich history that dates back to the time of Chinggis Khan in the twelfth century, both countries have had a very profound and recognizable influence on the custom and culture of modern Mongolia.


The moderate temperature and dryness of the north make this area ideal for raising cattle, horses, sheep, and goats. The abundance of grass in this region allows families to let their herds roam and feed on their own during the day. Due to the latitude of the province, the extended daylight hours allow for ample light for herding, milking, and sheering when the herds return later in the day. No matter the type of livestock, there are many different products to be derived from the milk or fur of the animal as well as many uses for the animal itself.


Submitted by MLD on Thu, 2012-09-13 14:08
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A few months back, we posted about our friend Lisa Jacenich and her husband James who were going to be heading to Mongolia to set up felting cooperatives in an effort to help employ women in several rural provinces.


Submitted by administrator on Tue, 2012-03-06 21:14
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Lisa Jacenich has been producing textured art since 1997 and has become well known for her felting. Her work has shown up in private collections, fashion shows, and boutiques around the world. In 2011, Jacenich met up with Ken Dabkowski, M-CAM team member focusing on innovation literacy, which resulted in the connection between Jacenich and Tsend Enkhtuya through the Heritable Innovation Trust program. This relationship has led to the development of three felting business incubators in the Uverkhangai Province in Mongolia.


Submitted by DRT on Sun, 2011-10-02 08:57
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78-year-old Grandma Chagan spent her days dreaming of the homeland she was forced to abandon over 53 years ago due to the construction of the country's spaceflight base. Chagan said she remembers the day the helicopters landed near her yurt and her family were forced to pack everything they owned and leave the only land they knew to be home. Chagan lived in the Baori Ulan village, which housed over 200 families as well as 70,000 sheep as well as 1,400 herdsmen of the Tuerhute Tribe of Mongolia. With no where to go, they wandered the desert for eight years.


Submitted by DLH on Tue, 2011-08-09 17:38
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In the summer of 2010, M•CAM team members Ken Dabkowski and Dr. David Martin ventured to Mongolia to initiate the Heritable Innovation Trust program. The Heritable Innovation Trust Program (H.I.T.) is the first non-property based means to document, protect, and steward indigenous and customary knowledge. Enkhtuya Tsend of the Mongolian National Business Incubator Federation introduced them to the members of two felting co-ops; one in Dalanzadgad (the Gobi Desert) and other in IkhTamir Soum, Arkhangai.