Mother-daughter researchers to share inspiring indigenous knowledge

January 07, 2013



UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- "Indigenous Knowledge That Inspires: Lessons from Research and Praxis in Central Africa" will be held from noon to 1 p.m. Jan. 23, in Foster Auditorium, 102 Paterno Library. The event is free and open to the public and can also be viewed live at and search for the presentation date in the menu to bring up the direct link. (No login is required.)

The mother-daughter duo of Lee Ann and Arianna De Reus has worked in central Africa for seven years. In this seminar they will share some of the indigenous knowledge that continues to inspire their research and praxis. Issues they will discuss include prosecution or forgiveness among rape survivors in the Democratic Republic (DR) of the Congo, how teachers and youth inspire collaborative entrepreneurial initiatives in Rwanda and how innovative farming practices in Kenya can be incorporated into a Penn State greenhouse design.

Lee Ann De Reus is an associate professor of human development and family studies, and women studies at Penn State Altoona. As a scholar-activist, she travels regularly to Panzi Hospital in eastern DR Congo to conduct research, develop programs for rape survivors and inform her advocacy work in the U.S. In Rwanda she leads an annual student trip to develop entrepreneurial projects with vulnerable populations.

Arianna De Reus is a sophomore at Penn State majoring in community, environment and development with concentrations in French, Arabic and humanitarian engineering and social entrepreneurship. She works in Kenya and Rwanda with local partners to construct, adapt and market affordable greenhouses for small-scale farmers.

The presentation is part of an ongoing series highlighting the importance of indigenous knowledge and is sponsored by the Interinstitutional Consortium on Indigenous Knowledge (ICIK) and the Penn State Social Sciences Library. For more information on ICIK, go to

For more information, accessibility accommodations requests and questions about the physical access provided, please contact Helen Sheehy at or 814-863-1347.



  • Lee Ann De Reus learned techniques for making soy milk.

    IMAGE: Penn State
Last Updated January 09, 2015