Biocultural diversity: diversity of life in all its manifestations- biological, cultural and linguistic
– which are all interrelated within a complex socio-ecological adaptive system.
Latest News / Events (see News and Events for more)
  • Schools forest excursion update

    24th November 2015

    Inkcubeko Nendalo forest excursions funded by Department of Education

    more info

    Groen Sebenza update

    1st November 2015

    The Groen Sebenza project is now complete and the pioneers have successfully completed their mini-projects.

    more info

  • Nombulelo High School Grahamstown

    1st November 2015

    Nombulelo High School traditional medicinal plant garden

    more info

    Lycee Francais du Cap

    1st June 2015

    Lycee Francais du Cap sponsors Inkcubeko Nendalo

    more info

  • Bio-cultural diversity exhibition Albany Museum

    12th December 2014

    Bio-cultural diversity exhibition Albany Museum - 'Xhosa Plants'

    more info

    International Phytomedicine Symposium - George

    27th March 2014

    International Phytomedicine Symposium: Green medicine, sustainable futures, knowledge catalyst.

    more info

The cultural and spiritual meaning of nature in South Africa is poorly recorded and often misunderstood. Natural resources have come to be viewed as a "safety net" for poor people around the world who rely on wild plants for food, fuel, medicines, construction material etc. Very often, however, their daily utilitarian use belies a deeper significance that is seldom probed and recorded. Many traditional cultural practices regularly use wild plants, making nature inseparable from cultural identity. In our modernizing world cultural practices are threatened by the loss of biodiversity, and, conversely, the cultural value of many plants, forests and animals could be used as an argument to support the conservation of biodiversity.

The bio-cultural diversity conservation programme aims to:

"There is an inextricable link between cultural and biological diversity"
(Declaration of Belem 1988)
"Culture and nature have co-evolved over time to become intertwined and mutually dependent. We lose one, and we lose the other."
Martin, G. 2008. Restoring resilience. Resurgence 250: 13-15.